Friday, 11 July 2014


I tuned in for the first episode of Mayo Chiki (still can't verbally pronounce it) and here I am giving my thoughts on what was quite a mixed bag.

Kinjiro "Jiro" Sakamachi has gynophobia (fear of women) that stems from his (pro-wrestling I think) mom and sister practicing on him ever since he could walk. This phobia manifests into a nosebleed whenever he is touched by women. His sister Kureha wakes him up with  painful wrestling moves and at school he avoids women like the plague - because to him they are the plague. Now the tale really kicks into overdrive when he meets Subaru Konoe - a butler to one of the school's most popular girls - Kanade Suzutsuki. Now the thing about Subaru - he's actually a she. 

"Come on! How else was he supposed to realize she's a girl dressed as a man?"

Jiro stumbles upon this fact when he encounters her in the men' bathroom and sees that she's wearing ladies underwear. For further proof, he ends up groping not her pec later on, but a boob and so does the math. All this sets up the plot as Jiro is blackmailed with death should he reveal Subaru's actual gender to anyone.

"Because blackmail always goes down easier when the target is tied to the bed and you have a knife."

Now to be perfectly clear, I don't really like harem animes. I find them quite repetitive and just one big bowl of fanservice consisting of boob grabbing, panty watching etc. Not into that sort of thing. It has to have a really cool twist or plot to grab my attention. Actually, it has to have a cool twist or plot to KEEP my attention. I also have a soft spot for really funny stuff. I'm a big fan of Negima (one male teacher teaching at an all-girls school) and Infinite Stratos (male student attending all female school with mecha like exoskeletons). The former is very funny to watch and the second utilizes several ideas and turns them into hilarious hijinks plots. That's about as far as my harem tastes go, so I am really hard to please when it comes to this particular genre.

"Weird! This is exactly how I choose to start my day as well - in an ankle-lock screaming like a bitch!"

However, coming into this show, I kept an open mind. I also spared it a look in the first place as I adored Genevieve Simmons as Mikoto Urabe in Mysterious Girlfriend X. Blake Shepard who plays Jiro is also one of my favorite male voice actors (The Sacred Blacksmith, Dream Eater Merry). Simmons plays Subaru and Carli Mosier (who I will add has just about the most sultry and seductive voice I have ever heard) plays Kanade who is shown to be quite the sadist who puts up a sweet-girl front, but deep down has a heart as black as coal. Not a big fan of the character. In fact, once she learns about Jiro's phobia, she purposely starts touching and groping him just to see how far she can push it. Did I mention he was tied to the bed when all of this happened? I'm not a fan of double standard. If she'd been a man and he a woman, there would be a riot and all kinds of screams of molesting and sexual assault flying around, but not here! Here it's portrayed as perfectly normal and Kanade suffers no consequences for an act I consider extremely disgusting.

"Believe it or not, the same person who tied Jiro to the bed, did this."

Subaru I also had a hard time liking. Instead of simply asking Jiro politely not to tell anybody, maybe flirting with him or explaining the consequences of revealing the secret (which is important, so I will not be revealing it here), she attacks him and talks about beating him so hard that he suffers memory loss. How do you like someone like that? Jiro I pitied the whole episode. He seems like a very savvy bloke. He's down to earth. He's normal, albeit a little above the influence which is uncommon among teenaged males. It's also a trait I really like in a character. It's unfortunately not enough to get me to go beyond episode 1.

Rating the first episode: 6.5/10. This series is typical harem as it relies heavily on fanservice, accidental perversion , catgirls and other harem specific tropes. If you love harem shows, this one will make you happy. If you're looking for harem with a twist, you'll be both brave and clever and avoid this title.

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