What is Moe Anime? [Definition, Meaning]

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Lucky-Star-wallpaper-700x447 What is Moe Anime? [Definition, Meaning]


Honey's Anime always enjoy bringing you the sweet goodness when it comes to definitions, and we would love to discuss the meaning of moe. Many of you are probably familiar with this term, but for those who are just jumping into the world of anime this one is for you. Akihabara, the hub for all things otaku, features a lot of the moe culture. You'll find an array of figurines, posters, and more displaying young cartoonish girls. More so, you may even come across a handful of women dressed up as maids to accommodate you into their cafe.

So you're still wondering, what is moe? The term moe stems from the Japanese word moeru which can mean “to burn/get fired up” or “to burst/bud”. This all depends on the way it is written in kanji, but in otaku terms it refers to one's strong emotional attachment for a certain character, preferably a younger female. Cute girls represent purity and innocence, which is very alluring to many people and so moe becomes the term used to emphasize that. It is by no means spreading any negative connotation, but rather embracing our youth and happy-go-lucky state of mind. Furthermore, moe isn't something romantic (unless you want it to be) but rather, a strong overwhelming feeling of wanting to just hug and cradle these characters. To borrow the moeru term fired up, many otaku get excited over seeing young fictional girls having a good time. So we're going get you all bursting with excitement as we will now provide some great examples of moe themed anime.

Embracing our youth

As aforementioned, moe is a term used to emphasize one's love for the younger fictional female characters. Moe is a symbol of youth and adventure, and so many anime feature these types of girls who personify the word. Both male and female embrace the moe culture because of the freedom and prosperity it provides. We all wish to feel young again, where there are no rules attached to our behaviors, and we can enjoy the random conversations that come with being young. The feeling becomes nostalgic, as you watch a group of youthful cute girls enjoying the slice of life, and it reminds you of how beautiful life was when nothing mattered.

While some may not agree to the overwhelming passion that others have for moe culture, it's a story that we all can read in our imaginations, sift through the pages, and accept that we too at one point were also searching for truth and had a thirst for adventure. Himouto! Umaru-chan is a wonderful example of moe so let us hop right in.

Himouto! Umaru-chan

Lucky-Star-wallpaper-700x447 What is Moe Anime? [Definition, Meaning]
  • Episodes: 12
  • Aired: July 9, 2015 – September 24, 2015

Himouto! Umaru-chan is a story about Umaru, who is just your ordinary high school girl. She is well mannered, achieves good grades, and is adored by many male and female classmates. However, what many of her mates don't know is her superman-like persona. Behind closed doors she transforms into a lazy, chibi sized, and overly messy otaku causing all kinds of havoc. This slice of life comedy follows Umaru and her unfortunate brother Taihei, as the two live together under one roof, creating all sorts of mischief. Umaru becomes a carefree individual who spends her time watching anime, drinking cola, and causing Taihei much pain as he has to clean up after her.

It's a very funny example of embracing our youth and not caring for authority, as we see between Umaru and Taihei. As she waddles about lazily around her apartment looking for something to catch her attention, Taihei is always there trying to tame her, but to no avail. Umaru's close friends are no different than her, as they all share the quirkiness of a youthful mind, spreading laughter around themselves. Moe is very much a selling point of the show, as we see a young adorable girl who really loves nothing more than living her life the way she chooses, and lets no one tell her what she can or can't do. If you truly love moe then Himouto! Umaru-chan is a highly recommended anime to watch.

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Himouto! Umaru-chan Trailer


Lucky-Star-wallpaper-700x447 What is Moe Anime? [Definition, Meaning]
  • Episodes: 23
  • Aired: October 5, 2007 -March 28, 2008

When Tomoya, a bright young teenager, walked to school he passes a young girl mumbling words to herself. Something she says catches his attention, and so he approaches her with curiosity. He discovers that her name is Nagisa, and that she is suffering from an illness. Over time the two become friends through constant communication and Tomoya is then told that, due to her illness she's set out to achieve her goal to revive the school drama club. What gets more interesting over time is that four other young cute girls come together, along with Tomoya and Nagisa to help overcome their own respective obstacles.

We chose Clannad as part of our moe anime because, immediately you become emotionally attached to at least one of the five girls and you relate to them. One great example is Fuuko Ibuki, who is somewhat of a loner but enjoys spending her time carving really cute looking starfish to make others happy. Her character design is that of a young girl with dreams of becoming something, embracing her youth and just being ditzy. When you see her, your heart will flutter and burst with emotion because of how adorable she is and you just want to hug her to say everything will be alright. This is what moe refers to, as the characters make you feel a sense of awe and create an everlasting feeling of warmth.

Lucky-Star-wallpaper-700x447 What is Moe Anime? [Definition, Meaning]

Clannad Trailer

Cute and Innocent

Moe is more than just about clinging to our youth, but also it is about admiring the innocent and cute nature of the characters we so love. When we are in the presence of these characters, our hearts lose all control and fall into a state of quasi love. It is a remarkable feeling, since we don't even realize that we have become hypnotized by the innocent, shy, and quirkiness of our beloved. This is why moe has become such a popular genre for many, because a large number of us dream of being embraced and feel that “doki doki” overpowering our will.

In our next example of moe anime, we will take a look at Lucky Star. This anime truly defines moe just as much as our other examples, but you'll immediately fall in love with Tsukasa and her sister once you see how they behave. Without further adieu, let us get right into it.

Lucky Star

Lucky-Star-wallpaper-700x447 What is Moe Anime? [Definition, Meaning]
  • Episodes: 12
  • Aired: April 8, 2007 – September 17, 2007

The name itself sounds so fun loving and childlike, similar to that of main characters Tsuaka and her sister Kagami. While most of the spotlight is focused on Izumi, we have decided to choose Tsukasa for good reason. When you first get a glimpse of Tsukasa, your heart starts to melt at her extremely child like appearance. Her happy-go-lucky attitude shines all throughout, and her passion for cooking gives her a strong sense of maturity despite her looks.

Tsukasa isn't perfect by any means, as she is quite clumsy and airheaded at times. It is for that reason we quickly fall for her, because we just want to hold her in our arms to tell her that mistakes are okay, and we love her for who she is. When she falls asleep (which is very often) her adorable face stands out, and at that moment your heart swells with jubilance. Kagami on the other hand is more mature than Tsukasa, and is the one who protects her. While her cold exterior may throw some viewers off, she is just as moe as Tsukasa because of her tsundere mindset. The large beaming eyes, paired with their rosy red cheeks just make you want to scream and reach out to worship them. We highly suggest tuning in to Lucky Star, as it will surely fill you up with joy.

Lucky-Star-wallpaper-700x447 What is Moe Anime? [Definition, Meaning]

Lucky Star Trailer


Moe popularity will most likely continue to grow and evolve over time, so we suggest you check these fantastic anime out for a nice glimpse. Since the mid 80's, moe culture has touched many and will be forever eched in the stones of anime lifestyle. Whether you see the cute girls wandering the busy streets of Akihabara in the mid afternoon, or while tuning in to your favorite series, you'll always find a hint of moe lying around. If you feel like there are more moe anime out there that didn't make the list, be sure to show your love and leave them in the comments section down below!

As always, for your sweet anime fill, keep it locked here at Honey's Anime.

Lucky-Star-wallpaper-700x447 What is Moe Anime? [Definition, Meaning]


Author: Rob "NualphaJPN" B.

A passionate fan of gaming, writing, journalism, anime, and philosophy. I've lived in Japan for many years and consider this place to be my permanent home. I love to travel around Japan and learn about the history and culture! Leave a comment if you enjoy my articles and watch me play on twitch.tv/honeysgaming ! Take care!

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Original Article Below

Lucky-Star-wallpaper-700x447 What is Moe Anime? [Definition, Meaning]

That sensation where all the warmth flows through your body and your cheeks burn with glee---What do you call that exactly? That feeling that has no exact explanation but is something you merely experience, that is moe.

If you've read a few of my articles (thank you, by the way!) or even if you just watch a lot of anime, you have probably heard of "moe" which is pronounced as "mo-eh," but how much do you really know about this term? Do you even really understand what it means?

The Term

Lucky-Star-wallpaper-700x447 What is Moe Anime? [Definition, Meaning]

"Moe" is a Japanese slang term mainly used by otaku to describe an intense feeling towards a character in an anime, manga, or video game. I have seen "moe" translated as "burn" which could technically be due to the warm feeling of excitement a person may experience, but "moe" is literally translated into "budding" like the budding of a plant. Perhaps this is due to the budding love or infatuation one might feel towards a character?

As a term, "moe" is quite unique as it can be used as an interjection such as when some characters in ecchi anime cry out "Moe!" upon a background of hearts or as an adjective to describe a feeling, sensation, or character. Its usage can be quite varied allowing it to be used fairly easily by anyone, even those who do not have a complete idea of what the word means.

It is a tad difficult to explain "moe" to someone who may not have experienced this sensation. Even though I stated that it is an intense feeling, it doesn't really apply to just any emotion. It is a strong feeling akin to love or infatuation for something or someone that is not quite sexual in nature. There is a very fine line between moe and sexual attraction so please, do not confuse otaku who feel moe as perverts because that is not always the case. The term "moe" does usually refer to an individual in an anime, manga, or video game, but there are other types of moe, as well, but I shall touch on that point in a moment.

Moe in Anime

Lucky-Star-wallpaper-700x447 What is Moe Anime? [Definition, Meaning]

If you haven't noticed, anime are full of moe factors. What I mean to say is, there are many different character types included in an anime to increase the possible viewers by appealing to a person's particular moe. We can see this quite clearly in ecchi and harem anime that involve various character types like shotas/lolitas, tsunderes, danderes, and meganekko. The vast amounts of character types will likely bring in more viewers.

Of course, there are also certain anime dedicated to certain moe preferences. If you have seen Loveless, it can appeal to the nekomimi (cat ear) moe or for that shounen ai moe. Loveless is a good example of a moe anime that isn't ecchi, but I happen to feel like there are more moe anime that are ecchi like He Is My Master that is to appeal to those interested in French maids.


Lucky-Star-wallpaper-700x447 What is Moe Anime? [Definition, Meaning]

There are so many different types of moe out there. I don't even think I could list them all, but let me give you a general idea so you understand what it means. As some of you have seen in Kyoukai no Kanata, Murai provides the meganekko moe, which is the glasses character moe. Another standard moe would be the tsundere moe that you can experience in anime like Toradora. I never really understood the appeal of tsunderes until I watched a reverse harem and played an otome game. While the idea is the same, the difference in genders changes the experience, or maybe it's because I chose a gender I find appealing.

Anyway, I did state before that not all moe involves people or character personalities. Look at Souta from Working!! (Wagnaria) who has a moekko, which means he finds cute things very moe, which is why he likes Popura. For girls turned off by an otaku's moe, let them know that they probably have a moekko! What girl doesn't like cute things?

Maybe you have a technology moe? The feel of a new piece of technology may spark your inner geek and get your gears revving. I remember squealing with glee and feeling completely moe over a new game system. Yes, games hit me deep down. Maybe you have an animal moe! They are cute so you just can't help but gush over them and want to glomp onto them!


Lucky-Star-wallpaper-700x447 What is Moe Anime? [Definition, Meaning]

I hope you have had a better understanding of what "moe" is after reading this article. Do you feel moe over anything? Or maybe you started to think I'm just a little weird. Either way, let me know your thoughts!

Lucky-Star-wallpaper-700x447 What is Moe Anime? [Definition, Meaning]


Author: Javier Garcia

Hey guys! I'm a huge fan of anime and video games. I used to be a competitive fighting game player (search my name in YouTube). So, I guess it was natural for me to make my way over here to Japan. I teach English, write anime articles, and put together videos when I have time. I hope you enjoy the content we've created for you here at Honey's Anime!

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