It’s a term I widely use yet I’ve come to realize that it’s an ill-defined term. Two girls kissing does not necessarily define ‘Yuri’ any better than something as simple as sharing a promise. This might be a little abstract, but bear with me here.
Yuri is to be Felt
Got that? Since you’re on this blog, you probably know the right side, but I won’t blame you for not knowing the left. The key difference here is the emotion it conveys, for Haruka and Yuu on the right its a reconciliation from sullen jealousy, on the left… I’ll leave that to you to find out.
All this is to say, Yuri is more than visual stimuli. The emotional connection is what we, as fans, want to be able to empathize with. Of course, you’ll have a hard time explaining this to someone outside the fandom, especially so if you are a male fan.
Sexuality is irrelevant
Sexual desire and orientation are not 100% crucial in Yuri. What I mean to say here is Yuri ≠ Lesbian. I’m sure there’ll be those who disagree with me here, but hear me out first.
If you’ve been a long time fan of Yuri, you’ll notice that the portrayal of Yuri has become much more open of recent as opposed to the reserved platonic relationships of ‘Class S’. Those were stories about strong feelings of intimacy between girls but they were typically written with the thought in mind that the characters would inevitably proceed to pursue traditional relationships as adults. This fact however, does not negate the relationships which they once shared with other women.
Yuri is Ambiguous
Which goes back to why there is no real way to define the Yuri. Between girls, it’s generally more acceptable to have intimate relations and that does sometimes blur the line between friendship and love. Which is kind of why CGDCT(Cute Girls Doing Cute Things) shows attract a lot of Yuri fans without having to blatantly spell out that they’re gay.
Okay, maybe Gochuumon would have been a better choice for ambiguity, but you get the point.
How far ‘Yuri’ extends really depends on the person, so keep an open mind, unless that someone tries to tell you Kiss X Sis is Yuri in which case you should unfriend/block/delete them immediately.
I really hope I won’t confuse anyone with this post, because I’ve successfully confused myself by binge writing this.