Top Ten RWBY Hugs – Volume 8 Edition

By: Michael Smith


Well folks, another season of RWBY has come and gone, and that means that it is once again time to rank that single-most important aspect of the entire series. No, not the fight scenes, not the episodes, not even the music; friends, it is once again time to rank the quality of hugs present in RWBY as of the end of Volume 8. Which hugs have fallen from their warm embraces in the top 10? Which new favorites have risen to become a the entire internet’s favorite hug in all of RWBY? Am I still even qualified to be doing these articles having lost the finale prediction game yet again? Yes. As always, if numbers and tidbits aren’t your passion, just skip down to where the numbers start.

Spoilers for all of Volume 8 of RWBY!

The ground rules: hugs require two arms and the intent to hug someone, side arms or playful shaking of shoulders or riding motorcycles do no count as hugs, end of story. Second, to prevent this ranking consisting of only a few characters and to increase diversity, I have included only unique pairings in each of the top 10, so there won’t be two Bee hugs for example. Some entries may share some characters such as the full team hug, however these are distinct from other entries. Finally, hugs were chosen for the list based on their importance within the episode in particular and the show in general, and also which ones I think look the best and yes this does mean some hugs will be in different positions on the list than last time because they have a different value for this season. In particular I like to change things up season to season, so this year the list will value Volume 8 hugs more highly.

Now for some newly updated statistics. As a reminder, each pair in a hug is counted once. If there are more than two people in a hug, the pairs are counted separately. For example a hug featuring Ruby, Yang, and Weiss would count as 1 each for RY, WY, and WR. This does not add to the overall hug count which only tracks total hugs period.

Total Hugs: 52. 4 in Vol.1, 4 in Vol. 2, 5 in Vol. 3, 6 in Vol. 4, 6 in Vol. 5, 8 in Vol. 6, and 4 in Vol. 7, 19 in Vol. 8

Hugs by pairings:

  1. Ruby/Yang – 11 (9 solo, 1 RWY, 1 RWBY)
  2. Penny/Ruby – 8 (7 solo, 1 Ruby/Penny/Nora)
  3. Weiss/Yang – 4 (2 solo, 1 RWY, 1 RWBY)
  4. Blake/Yang– 4 (3 solo, 1 RWBY)
  5. Ren/Nora – 4 (4 solo)
  6. Weiss/Ruby – 3 (1 solo, 1 RWY, 1 RWBY)
  7. Ruby/Qrow – 3 (3 solo)
  8. Blake/Kali – 3 (2 solo, 1 family)
  9. Blake/Ghira – 2 (1 solo, 1 family)
  10. Ruby/Blake – 2 (1 solo, 1 RWBY)
  11. Nora/Oscar – 2 (2 solo)
  12. Weiss/Winter – 2 (2 solo)
  13. Penny/Nora – 2 (1 solo, 1 Ruby/Penny/Nora)
  14. Blake/Weiss – 1 (1 RWBY)
  15. Jaune/Pyrrha – 1 (1 solo)
  16. Jaune/Ren – 1 (1 solo)
  17. Weiss/Klein – 1 (1 solo)
  18. Blake/Ilia – 1 (1 solo)
  19. Ren/Yang – 1 (1 solo)
  20. Ruby/Jaune – 1 (1 solo)
  21. Qrow/Ironwood – 1 (1 solo)
  22. Weiss/Whitley – 1 (1 solo)
  23. Jaune/Oscar – 1 (1 solo)
  24. Ruby/Nora – 1 (1 Ruby/Penny/Nora)
  25. Penny/Weiss – 1 (1 solo)
  26. Penny/Yang – 1 (1 solo)
  27. Penny/Blake – 1 (1 solo)

Yeah that’s right, there were 19 hugs in Volume 8. That’s a crazy uptick from last season, we’ve gone from the least number of hugs to the most in one season. We also added a bunch of new pairings: Weiss/Whitley, Penny/Nora, Jaune/Oscar, and Penny/WBY. To be fair, some of these pairings have barely interacted outside of this season so that’s not entirely surprising. 36/54 hug pairings feature same sex characters: 33 hugs are between exclusively female characters, 3 hugs are between exclusively male characters; this is a sharp uptick in female/female hugs, with 12 more hugs, and a much, much smaller increase of 1 in male/male hugs. This may or may not say something about the level of male/male bonding, romantic or otherwise, that RWBY is comfortable showcasing. The pairing with the most hugs this volume are of course Ruby/Penny at 5 total, Penny alone has the most hugs by character at 10 with Ruby a close second at 9, this is fitting given that Penny is probably the the focus character of this season, or as much of one as any given season of RWBY can have a focus character with like, 50 named characters.

Enough math, on with the hugs!

Top 10 Hugs! (as of Volume 8):

10-8) Penny/Weiss, Penny/Yang, Penny/Blake (Vol. 8 Chapter 12 “Creation” 14:10, 14:15, and 14:16)

A set of characters that do not typically interact, and apparently never will again. These are all cute in their own way and hard to separate so I’ve just ranked them together as a unit. Though I think the current order of pictures is probably the best, the Yang hug is a little stiff and the Wiess hug has Ruby looking on at her two gfs bffs fondly so it’s clearly the best of the three.

7) Team RWBY (Vol. 5 Chapter 14 “Haven’s Fate” – 16:50)

Oh I’m sorry did you want a new team RWBY hug? Well so did I but we can’t all have nice things now can we. Although to be fair, the whole team wasn’t actually together for most of the season so I guess they never really had the time to do one. Maybe now that they’re all stuck in Great Value Spirit World we’ll get a better one. Until then, this is still somehow the only full team RWBY hug we have so it’s staying in the list.

6) Ren and Nora (Vol. 7 Chapter 6 “A Night Off” – 11:16)

Hahaha, these two barely even get a hug this season, let alone another kiss. In fact, even though they said the long sought after three words of shipper dreams, this ship is as dead as Penny is, again. I’m almost impressed by the RWBY crew’s dogged determination to not let on screen ships last more than a season. I’m sure this mostly off/sometimes on relationship will be on again at some point, maybe Volume 11.

5) Ruby and Blake (Vol. 6 Chapter 13 “Our Way” – 5:00)

Ladybug fans rejoice! Your pairing had a lot of interactions this season making this hug more relevant than the season it actually happened in. Honestly there might have been more Ladybug content than Bumblebee content this season. Not enough to get another hug mind you, but I think Blake and Ruby had more scenes together than Blake and Yang did. Which is weird given the total lack of Blake and Ruby scenes in earlier seasons but I suppose it’s better late than never.

4) Ruby and Penny (Vol. 8 Chapter 12 “Creation” – 14:00)

Super adorable, even the odd messaging of this scene can’t detract from how cute these two are together, the fact that Penny dies very soon after this does sort of detract from it though. Yeah I’m gonna keep mentioning that, if I have to suffer so do you. As the last bit of Nuts and Dolts content (does that ship name even apply anymore if she’s not a robot?) it’s a good hug. It could definitely be better as evidenced by a latter pick.

3) Blake and Yang (Vol. 8 Chapter 10 “Ultimatum” – 15:30)

Is this a ship? They keep telling me it’s a ship, but despite all odds it keeps not happening for increasingly tenuous reasons. We’ve progressed from looks, to comments, to hugs, to super romantic looking embraces this season so maybe next season there will be a tentative hand holding of some kind. As stated earlier, there were actually net negative ships this season, the one canon on screen ship dissolved so we are once again back at 0 ships. I mean, it’s a great looking hug between what should definitely be two characters that are dating by now. Maybe next season.

2) Ruby/Penny/Nora (Vol. 8 Chapter 11 “Risk” 15:35)

Yeah I know this one also features Ruby and Penny but it has a third character in it so it’s an entirely distinct pairing. This is the goodbye hug that Penny deserves, if my girl has to go out then she should go out in style. Penny and Nora have basically never talked before this season but their brief interactions were cute enough and they sort have an almost sisters vibe going on. Ruby and Penny as usual are a very adorable pair. The colors of the sky really match the overall red/pink aesthetic these characters have so that all matches up really well. Sidenote: I’ve never noticed that all three of these characters have almost the exact same black gloves until this scene but now I cannot unseen it and neither can you, you’re welcome.

1) Weiss and Yang (Vol. 5 Chapter 4 “Lighting the Fire” – 15:20)

Is this still the best looking hug in the show? Yes, somehow it is, if only because the long awaited Bumblebee kiss has, somehow, still not materialized. There was actually a new Yang/Weiss hug this season and it was pretty cute, but obviously not as cinematic as this one. Eat your hearts out Freezerburn shippers, your ship had exactly as many hugs this season as the probably more intended ship, for some reason. Anyways, still the best looking hug 4 seasons in a row.

Michael is a CSCI graduate who currently does freelance work when he's not ranking things, writing articles, or overthinking his D&D character. He enjoys cats, cooking, and space in no particular order.


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