[Fujoshi Friday] Top 5 Tokyo Ghoul BL/Yaoi Pairings

Article Intro

As its ending states, “the seasons die off, one by one”, but the popularity of Tōkyō Ghoul is an evergreen. There are few anime that could be classified as “intense and unforgettable,” but Tōkyō Ghoul is surely one of them, with its tragic stories and wonderful characters. Challenged by life, that made them so similar in appearance and soul, but so different in their eating habits, Ken Kaneki and all the people he will meet along the way are divided between their true nature and ethic, and they will have to deal with it more than once. Human? Ghoul? Is it so wrong to be one or the other? Isn’t there a solution to live in peace together? That’s what Kaneki will question himself about, and the path for understanding, for finding the answer, will be a long and hard one.

Maybe, Kaneki and all characters in Tōkyō Ghoul became so popular precisely because of that. Kaneki isn’t the only one who torments himself for being a human trapped in a ghoul’s body, though he’s the only one who had been human for real. Broken and obsessed, but also gentle and sympathetic people will help Kaneki to get through his identity crisis and find his place in the world, securing that way their legacy as super shippable characters, even though there are many people who believe that in Tōkyō Ghoul there’s nothing to ship about. Well, there’s nothing else to do but prove them wrong with the following countdown. Let’s show them that love can be hidden also in the cruelest and saddest stories! After all, drama is a breeding ground for fandom’s fantasies, so let’s find out together which Tōkyō Ghoul BL/Yaoi couples are its favorite ones!

5. Uta x Ken Kaneki (UtaKane)

And in fifth place we find UtaKane! Yeah, maybe some of you are now thinking “but there’s no evidence of UtaKane in Tōkyō Ghoul!”, since they barely talked to each other during the course of the anime, but pairing characters is something that goes beyond canon material, sometimes, and a real fangirl can surely understand that “if it’s cool, then it’s shippable”. Indeed, UtaKane is, most of all, based on the fact that people think the two characters fit well together, especially when Kaneki is in his full ghoul form (Shiro!Kaneki), with that alternative outfit that can be easily associated with Uta’s style.

After all, Uta has been a fundamental part in Kaneki’s change, having been the one who created his ghoul design, the one who gave an actual shape to Kaneki’s ghoul form. In episode 3 of the first season, for example, Uta is the one who asks Kaneki all sorts of personal questions to project that half mask that will be Kaneki’s first and last. Uta says he needs to know everything about Kaneki to make the best suited mask for him, so how could you not imagine a deeper – maybe one-night long? – hot relationship between the two of them, in which Uta tries to understand more about a still ignorant and scared Kaneki? Without Uta, Kaneki’s uniqueness couldn’t exist, so this could be one of the reasons why they are so loved as a pairing.

4. Ken Kaneki x Ayato Kirishima (KaneAya)

There are many people who like to imagine Ken Kaneki in a relationship with Tōka Kirishima. Then there are people who like to imagine him in a relationship with… her lovely, little brother! And those people are more numerous than you can even imagine! After all, Ayato had been an important part in Kaneki’s “training” as a ghoul with an objective to achieve, having been his playmate during the whole Aogiri Arc, in the anime. But what actually triggered fans’ fantasies about KaneAya would probably be the fact that it’s kind of intriguing to imagine Kaneki could have found his real love in someone who resembles – in appearance and coolness – his first love Tōka.

In an anime like Tōkyō Ghoul it’s hard to find evidence about romance, since it focuses more on battles, violence and inner struggles, but episodes such as the first of the second season, in which Kaneki fights against Ayato first, and then decides to join his team, can definitely help. From that moment on, Kaneki and Ayato are shown more rarely, but we see them fight shoulder to shoulder anytime they appear on the scene. The reason why they seem to have become kind of cold-hearted buddies? Well, how about them comforting each other in bed, the only moment they can enjoy a little bit of human warmth, while causing panic in the city later?

3. Renji Yomo x Uta (YomoUta)

Let’s forget about Kaneki for a moment, because there’s one of the hottest and loved BL/Yaoi couples from Tōkyō Ghoul in third position: YomoUta! Why is this pairing so famous? The reason is rather obvious, and it has to do with their troubled past! Indeed, as Itori informs us in episode 4, and as we come to know after the credits of episode 9 of the first season, Uta and Yomo used to be enemies in their youth, but they are on good terms now and often seen together. What made them become friends is still a mystery, and that’s what made the fandom fantasizes about the fact it must have born a feeling between them that had changed the way they perceive each other’s existence forever!

After all, it’s not even that hard to imagine. Yomo is calm and collected, extremely warm-hearted and with a strong ethic sense, though he doesn’t let his feelings out so often, while, on the contrary, Uta is an easygoing and extravagant guy, who doesn’t deny his ghoul nature and live free from prejudice and conventions. Aren’t they just meant for each other? They’re also appetizing to look at! Try to imagine muscular and ordinary Yomo embracing skinny and eccentric Uta, chained while sitting on his lap. Simply perfection, don’t you think?

2. Hideyoshi Nagachika x Ken Kaneki (HideKane)

In our Tōkyō Ghoul BL/Yaoi countdown, love in the time of adolescence couldn’t be missing, and HideKane is the best example when it comes to childhood friendship that develops in a special feeling later! Whoever watched the anime knows that Hide has a real veneration for Kaneki; Hide follows Kaneki everywhere he goes, helps him getting through the hardships of his growth, and desperately tries to be part of Kaneki’s life when Hide starts to understand Kaneki has changed forever. Hide accepts every side of Kaneki, secretly backs him up from behind the scenes until his tragic end, when Hide gives his life to protect Kaneki, to know he’ll be fine (episode 12 of the second season).

A deep, dramatic and pure form of love, that fans like to imagine both requited and one-sided. But what is sure is that Hide is one of the most important people to Kaneki, who suffers anytime Hide would like to tell Kaneki about his new self, but is afraid to be rejected or hated. As in episode 2 of the first season, for example, when Kaneki is panicked about the fact he has to keep his new being secret, but fight with all his strength to save Hide’s life from Nishio’s sudden attack. Surely, a heartbreaking love story that stuck in Tōkyō Ghoul fandom’s soul.

1. Shuu Tsukiyama x Ken Kaneki (TsukiKane)

Position #1 is all for TsukiKane, the ultimate manifestation of both love and fetish ever existed! All the people fond for Tsukiyama know that when he met Kaneki it was love at first sight, but not for his cute and insecure appearance as it is for his delicious half ghoul smell. After trying to offer Kaneki as a dish to his ghoul fellows one first time, Tsukiyama becomes obsessed with Kaneki and promises he won’t let his special prey be eaten by anyone else. Tsukiyama has to be the one to eat Kaneki, but he actually never attempt to do it, and in the end the only thing he seems to care about is Kaneki’s safety. Indeed, Tsukiyama develops a certain feeling for him, so strong that he even cries and begs Kaneki not to leave him alone when he decides to fight the last and more dangerous battle against CCG (episode 9 of the second season).

If it’s hard to find evidence of BL/Yaoi love in Tōkyō Ghoul, TsukiKane’s fans are more than lucky, since in the anime there’s a lot of canon material. They’re pretty easy to find! In episode 10, for example, Tsukiyama offers to rescue Kaneki from Aogiri, stating he won’t let bad people touch him, while in episode 7, he remembers the first time they met and goes crazy with Kaneki’s scent on a handkerchief he kept like a treasure! There are many ways in which the Tōkyō Ghoul fandom likes to ship them, but the most famous one sees definitely a scared, poor and naive Kuro!Kaneki teased by a troublesome and creepy Tsukiyama, who has him under his thumb. Well, really TsukiKane comes in all flavors! Not surprising it’s the most shipped of Tōkyō Ghoul couples!

Final Thoughts

Ok, this is the end of our BL/Yaoi Tōkyō Ghoul countdown and we could experience any form of shipping and sentiment possible! From childish sweet love to fetishes -- from purely sexual desire to emotional need – Tōkyō Ghoul’s fandom’s fantasy surely is unique, passionate and original, and who said it’s all in fangirl’s head was certainly wrong. Love can be the only support of mental sanity and life itself when you’re a bunch of lost children forced to fight struggles against people who can’t understand you but share your same sorrow. And Tōkyō Ghoul is no exception. So, dream, people, dream and don’t be afraid to, because in this cold world we still need some space for warmth and feelings!

Did you like our countdown? What’s your favorite pairing? Let us know with a comment below! See you on the next article!

anime-expo-2023-cosplay-TopIMG-1-500x281 [Fujoshi Friday] Top 5 Tokyo Ghoul BL/Yaoi Pairings


Author: Dareka Nobody

I’m an Italian dirty little girl obsessed with Japanese language, culture, literature, anime, manga, games, but also with writing, reading, and travelling, in general. I lived in Japan and I’m about to be moving there forever. When I’m not working, I translate yaoi light novels for a hobby. I’ve recently started a partnership with the website Novelleleggere.org where I publish my works. I run a page on Facebook about my translation and I’m also a blogger who likes to write about her experiences in Japan. Akiba addicted and enthusiastic Honeyfeed’s writer!

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