PokeNirvash's Oreimo Review Series: Revived! (UNMARKED SPOILERS AHEAD)
As some of you may know, Hulu will be taking down over half of its streaming anime titles on June 1st. Completely stupid, I know. One of those series is Oreimo, which I made a review thread for less than two years ago so I could finally put it behind me. Of course, procrastination forced me to put off the review series after 11 episodes, and with Blatch having pointed out how odd it was for me to just put it on indefinite hold like that, on top of the whole Hulu debacle, I feel it's about time I finished the episodes that are already on Hulu (for now), which is luckily just one more for the first season.
But before I do that, I'm going to post the first 11 reviews I did, for those of you who missed them. As with all Oreimo threads, complaints about Kirino are always welcome.
Episode 1: My Little Sister Can't Be My Love (originally posted August 21, 2014)
Due to a misunderstanding, I ended up watching the first minute of the first episode of season 2 by mistake, which I only knew because A-1 Pictures was credited for animation production instead of AIC Build. It was embarrassing, but at least I went in knowing that it was pretty much young Kyosuke's fault that Kirino's a bitch.
Speaking of which, as expected (or in my case, guaranteed), I ended up liking Kyosuke. He seems pretty chill for an MC, and kinda smug too; a slight but satisfying change of pace. My favorite scenes revolving around him involved the Meruru DVD:
- His first reaction being "Why the hell's her hair pink?", with "I can't let anyone see me with this!" coming in second.
- When trying to figure out who the DVD belonged to, he did so by admitting he had the DVD but lying about how it came into his possession.
However, there were two cases of his where I ended up siding with Kirino.
- Trying to help her out after running into her. I get you were trying to play the role of the nice older brother, but she already had her stuff together by the time you came to (I assume) pick it up for her. You already apologized, so you should've just gone into the kitchen and put away that carton of brown drink.
- The game selection. I would've chosen 2; hugging would be a little creepy (even if it's a nice gesture), and kicking her out of bed would come off as dickish. So no, I don't fault Kirino for protesting his dickish decision.
Also speaking of whom, as for Kirino... While she isn't my favorite character, I didn't wind up hating her either. The accidental season 2 intro, plus the fact that I have a sister of my own who's bugged me quite a bit in the past, helped with that. Could be less violent, but at least she only slapped him twice and kicked him off her chair. So far...
Other characters: Manami is indeed plain, I like the short hair look on Kyosuke and Kirino's mom, and Fumihiko Tachiki as the dad is the best thing.
Considering one of Kirino's many Meruru DVDs was the American release, I must ask, what company licensed it?
Uh... Kyosuke? When Kirino is talking about the ideal little sister, I think she's talking less about herself as a sister to you and more about a little sister of her own.
Let me tell you two pieces of information: First, Kirino is a self-proclaimed pro erogamer, and second, while little sister eroge are her favorite, she finds the incestuous angle disgusting. From that, I can adequately answer Kyosuke's question, concerning how Kirino can be a pro gamer in regards to eroge: she can play eroge while taking the route that avoids as many sex scenes as possible. The all-ages version of the game she had Kyosuke play at the end could've served as early practice for those skills, if not to support the makers of the game.
Overall, I found the first episode to be pretty good. The next episodes won't keep up the same quality, I'm sure, but I'll probably like them anyways. Well, parts of them, at least.
Rated TV-14DL. The big deciding factor was the constant talk and appearance of little sister eroge, which Kyosuke even pointed out once or twice had "those" kinds of scenes in them. Luckily, the lack of "those" scenes and the fact that the cover art was cutesy as opposed to fanservicey kept the episode from going into TV-MA territory. Other pieces of suggestive dialogue included Kirino calling Kyosuke a pervert, and Kyosuke imagining his mother reacting to the Meruru DVD ("Were those porn mags under your bed not enough for you?"). The language? Kyosuke mentally calling Kirino a bitch near the end.
Episode 2: My Little Sister Can't Bring Me to an IRL Meet (originally posted September 5, 2014)
I'm gonna start with the new girls. inhales SAORI IS AUTOMATICALLY THE BEST GIRL. Seriously, there's so much appeal to her. For one, she's tall. Next is her dress; the green plaid shirt and tight-fitting jeans look works for her. Not to mention those swirly glasses (one of my less sexual fetishes). She's the most pleasant girl in this show, which makes her an obvious winner. And she might be masochistic. I think I have yet another contender for the superficial title of "mai waifu".
As for Kuroneko, she's okay. I'm not a huge fan of her voice, and she seems kinda pretentious, but that aside, I see hope for her yet. Much hope.
The best part of the episode was definitely Kirino and Kuroneko's argument about whether Meruru or MASCERA was better. And yes, it's more than "just" an anime.
CURRENT KIRINO STANDINGS: Not despising her yet. She was certainly b*tchier this episode, sure, but I like to think of it as more of an insight into the heavy friction surrounding her (sibling) relationship with Kyosuke.
VARIOUS COMMENTS ABOUT KYOSUKE
- His reaction to Kirino's bitchiness is half "what the hell?" and half "like I give a shit", and I like that.
- He's a hypocrite. He wants others to not call his childhood friend Manami "plain", but he does the same thing! Geez...
- His chiming in during Kirino reading an Internet message out loud and her telling him to shut up reminds me of whenever I make a clever comment during a show and my own sister tells me to shush it.
- His good ideas make Kirino depressed that she can't scream at him about how stupid they are (because they aren't stupid).
- At the maid cafe, of course he had to get the one maid with a brocon fetish. At least she'd make a more ideal little sister than Kirino.
Two of the biggest laughs came from Kirino's response to Kyosuke reasonably shooting down her "crossdressing to get into the otaku girl meeting" idea ("Why weren't you born pretty?") and Kyosuke's reaction to the yaoi section of the doujinshi store.
Speaking of the crossdressing idea, I'm kinda relieved they didn't go through with it. I'm saving the unconvincing crossdressers for when I eventually watch Mayo Chiki. THE RIDE NEVER ENDS.
I personally think the other otaku girls' avoidance to Kirino was more a result of them getting wrapped up in conversations with the others. Which of course excluded Kirino, because she was so damn quiet.
"XXL?" "Men's?" Actually, it's landwhale size.
DINNER WITH THE KOUSAKAS: Last week was curry rice. This week is Salisbury Steak, which is just hamburger with steak sauce and no bun. Just like how I eat my burgers when gluten-free buns aren't an option. Minus the steak sauce.
FumihikoTachiki!Dad is still the best.
Did I mention that I like the more jazzy tunes on the soundtrack?
Rated TV-14DLS. Again, there was quite a bit of talk about little sister eroge. It could've gotten by with just a TV-14 straight (read: no subratings), but Kyosuke's review of the game upon his actually finishing it pushed it to a D. The L was for Kuroneko calling Kirino a bitch in Engrish (apparently that's gonna be a thing), and the S was for a considerably lewd but thankfully censored Meruru doujin cover.
[i'd saori her bajeena]
Episode 3: My Little Sister Can't Be This Cute (originally posted December 19, 2014)
I really, really liked this episode for most of the right reasons. If I used the three-episode test (which I rarely do), Oreimo would have passed it with my standards.
My favorite part was the climax, where Kyosuke managed to convince his dad to let Kirino keep all of her anime stuff, even to the point where claiming all the 18+ stuff was his. Kind of a stupid move that resulted in disappointment and a punch to the face from his father, but hey, better that than being scolded/assaulted by Kirino for taking any other course of action.
Speaking of which, we had Kirino's first act of sister-on-brother violence this episode: elbowing him in the face. This may surprise some of you, but this actually didn't piss me off all that much. Kirino was taking out a variable amount of anger on a drumming game and Kyosuke thought the best way to grab her attention was to judo-chop her on the head. Now, I'm not saying Kyosuke deserved the elbowing, but I will say he had it coming. And in all honesty, I expected Kirino to beat on him with the drumsticks, so hooray for surpassed expectations, I guess.
I find it kinda ironic that, not a few hours after talking with Kuroneko and Saori about being a little more open about her otakuism, that she accidentally exposed it to her dad.
Saori is still the best girl. I can vouch for her little monologue on the pleasures of procrastinating in regards to a reading a book or watching an episode of something.
Manami clearly has a crush on Kyosuke (predictable childhood friend characteristic), but I wouldn't say Kyosuke's unaware of it. I took his confusion about what she wanted as "do you want me to hug you or kiss you, you aren't giving me enough hints here", and even if he did know which one it was, I doubt he would've done it.
Kuroneko's thoughts on Kirino summed up: "That girl ain't right."
If real-life anime studios worked on the series in Oreimo... the end credits say Encourage Films for Meruru, but I'm tempted to say Toei based on the whole "poor animation early on but notable fluidity near the end" thing. MASCHERA would definitely be Sunrise, partly because of the pretentious dialogue.
I never knew there was a difference between galge and eroge. Damn you, Welcome to the NHK, for making me think they were the same thing! [shakes fist]
Of all the things this episode, I did not expect Ayase to be a model too.
Kyosuke should really learn to put his phone on vibrate when in the library.
Still lovin' the soundtrack, even when it goes all UNTZ UNTZ UNTZ UNTZ. Then again, I love that kind of music, so it's not surprising.
Rated TV-14DL. Standard eroge stuff, plus Kirino dropping an s-bomb.
Episode 4: My Little Sister Can't Be Going to Summerket (originally posted March 17, 2015)
First off, characters.
- I'm actually kinda partial on Kyousuke now. Even after making at least partial peace with Kirino, he's still letting her snide comments and bratty attitude get to him. Of course, he doesn't care what she thinks, but I'd much prefer it if he just kept shrugging it off as opposed to yelling at her half the time. Though maybe I wouldn't complain so much if it was dubbed and someone like, I dunno, Brad Swaile was voicing Kyousuke. But hey, I have to take what I get.
- As I expected, Kirino's bitch levels increased this episode. Berating Kyousuke for doing as the eyes do and looking at her friends is one thing, but elbowing him in the chest after being told to deal with waiting in line? Yeah, I can totally agree with the others there.
- Saori is still great, but her Ye Olde English Japanese speak is giving me conflicting feelings. Is it arousing, or is it annoying? Either ways, her online diction is better. Her icon's not bad, either. [insert winking emoticon here]
- Still not too interested in Kuroneko, I'm afraid, but her vidya skills kinda won me over to her side.
- Kirino's friends. I kinda like Kanako's snide attitude, and while Ayase is nice, I already know what's gonna happen next episode so I'll stay off of that.
- Manami didn't even show up this episode and yet she showed up in the OP. BUT FOR WHAT PURPOSE!?
Second off, plot.
- I did not care for the Siscalypse-playing plot at all. Sure, the Summerket half of it was fun (especially Saori's inevitable defeat and Kyousuke being smart enough to not avenge Kirino and play in her place), but the first part was way too confusing and boring. Like, what was the point of all the repeated gameplay as Kyousuke listened to Kirino and her friends through his surprisingly thin walls.
- Luckily, the arrival of a makeup box full of doujinshi made the first act interesting again. There was definitely no boredom in seeing Kyousuke make the good/bad move of barging into Kirino's room and taking the box to save her reputation, Kirino chasing after him and cornering him downstairs, Kyousuke dodging the inevitable nutshot, and finally the accidental groping which I'm sure drove a bunch of you into an angry frenzy. Very exciting, and in some cases unexpected.
- Summerket was alright, not much to say there. And it seems that it helped calm Kyousuke down, since he was showing less annoyed responses to Kirino and Kuroneko's tsuntsun-ness.
Third off, random things.
- Incest pandering aside, I'm still liking how realistic the brother-sister relationship between Kyosuke and Kirino is portrayed. Verbal threats that are obvious bluffs (Kirino threatening to kill Kyousuke if he talks to her friends), reconcerting third-party observations (Ayase telling Kyousuke that Kirino might not actually hate him), the rare resolution of a huge moment (the doujinshi stealing/accidental groping) before going back to the status quo, embarrassment at your older sibling seeing you excited followed by the feigning of aloofness... It's almost like a standard sibling relationship! Only, y'know, in anime.
- Maybe Kirino's comment about keeping herself from playing it online since there's no one to beat is a subtle way of saying she's keeping herself from playing the game in general so she can beat Kyousuke once he's finished.
- You ever get that feeling when you get up to answer the door, but someone else gets there first? I know that feel.
- "I already handed it to Kirino." Heh, more like she took it from you.
- I'm tempted to ship Kyousuke/Saori.
Rated TV-14DLS. More eroge and eroge talk, people calling other people "perverts", another s-bomb, and the accidental groping.
Episode 5: My Little Sister's Best Friend Can't Be This XX (originally posted March 19, 2015)
I was fearing this episode from the moment I read about it in Splitter's original post on CSW, and while my expectations were met, I liked this episode more than I expected. Success!
That said, in spite of what I liked about the episode, I have to confess, I'm not too fond of Ayase. Sure, I get that she's worried about Kirino's well-being and doesn't want her to fall victim to the depraved side of otakudom that she knows of, but still, she's a shitty friend. Defriending her based on the stereotype that otaku are dangerous, no exceptions, goes beyond jumping the gun; and refriending her based on the actually kinda true pretense that incest is yucky is a little too convenient an excuse to make up. Though that's more an issue with the writing, but since I don't like to put down the writers like the rest of you, I'll just blame it on the character.
And while his pseudo-declaration of incestual love for Kirino was more than a little overkill, I really like that Kyousuke's looking out for Kirino, in spite of her bitchiness. Seriously, sacrificing your own reputation for the sake of your sister takes serious balls. Though it may take a while before he non-reacts to future crotchkicks.
I just have to say it again; at this point, Kyousuke and Kirino's sibling relationship is much more realistic than that of other aniki-imouto relationships I've seen in anime (either the imouto is madly in love with the aniki, or she continually gets off on his suffering) and that relatability is one of the reasons I like this more than you would expect me to.
The one truth about Oreimo is that Daisuke Kousaka is the best male character. The reveal that he works for the police (if his procuring of certain documents for Kyousuke says anything) only adds to that.
Yeah, Kuroneko definitely knew that Kirino subtly insulted her to save face with Ayase. Doesn't mean she can't be sour about it.
Rated TV-14D. There was a lot of the usual talk about eroge and perversion, plus Kyousuke's false declaration of affection for Kirino and Ayase's subsequent disgust at it. In spite of a doujinshi or two, minor Siscalypse gameplay, and a depressed Kirino shower scene that was already censored enough, there was no nudity or sexual situations to warrant a higher rating.
Episode 6: My Childhood Friend Can't Be This Cute (originally posted May 19, 2015)
Finally, an episode where Kyosuke and Kirino avoid contact with one another! Sadly for most of you, we got plenty of Kirino screentime, most of it spent cursing Kyosuke without him being there. Oh, and her receiving and cuddling her Meruru dakimakura.
Back to Kyosuke, he spent most of the episode at Manami's place. And I have to say, this episode made her more interesting and likeable, in spite of any attempts the show pushed via her subtly perverted grandpa to ship them together (most notably, the shared bath and twin futons). Still, it was nice to see Kyosuke hang out with other people for once besides Kirino and her otaku friends. Very peaceful, in a way.
Manami's family is pretty neat too. Her grandparents are fun, her brother looks just like Conny from AoT (even better, he calls himself Rock), and her dad is an awfully quiet man. And I noticed that we never saw her mother, despite her showing up in a picture. Makes you think, huh?
Didn't expect this to be a Halloween episode. Also didn't expect this to share a certain topic with the Sailor Moon episode I watched an hour earlier (a haunted house theme for a specific establishment).
Not sure why Kirino kicked Kyosuke's door like that. At first, I wrote it off as her way of telling him, were he in his room, that she's coming through, so he wouldn't open the door and hit her in the face (why doesn't my sister do that to keep me from almost doing that?). The second time was a little troubling - she knew he was at Manami's, so maybe it was a force of habit - but her kicking it several times in frustration after that... I honestly don't know what to think of that without using the words "what", "a", and "bitch".
Various MST3K-style "putting words in the mouths of others" riffs:
- Grandpa Tamura: [hugs television] "Oh, HDTV, you're the only one who truly understands me..."
- Kyosuke: (walking up the stairs behind Manami) "Think unsexy thoughts, think unsexy thoughts..." [thinks of Kirino] "There we go... Wait, why isn't it working?"
- Manami: "Would you like dinner or a bath first? Or perhaps... me?"
- Mr. Kousaka: "Halloween? Friggin' American holidays..."
Rated TV-14. The tamest episode yet, but even then, Grandpa Tamura's rooting for Kyosuke and Manami to get it on, plus Kirino's dakimakura and bath scene and maybe the implications surrounding Kyosuke and Manami bathing together pushed it over TV-PG limits.
[for making japanese confectioneries]
Episode 7: My Little Sister Can't Be a Novelist (originally posted May 26, 2015)
So this episode was split up into two parts.
- This was a rather self-contained plot, where Kyosuke comes home to deal with Kirino and Kuroneko's rivalry in a most interesting form: a Meruru watching party turned sour by arguments over fanfiction (or as they call them in Japan, light novel doujinshi).
- Between the two's fanfictions, I like Kuroneko's more. Sure, the whole "author's favorite character time-travels back to the first episode and possesses a corpse as an excuse to turn the story into a romance" is a little cheesy given fanfic convention, but it's definitely better than Kirino writing a teenage girl's rendition of SAO only worse. And I see no problem with text and hard words. You call it pretentious, I call it an opportunity to expand my vocabulary!
- It may just be me thinking Kyosuke would be more tolerable if he was voiced by Brad Swaile, but seeing him in just an undershirt and tie makes him remind me so much of Rock from Black Lagoon.
- Japan doesn't have TV ratings for their broadcast programs, but if they did, I doubt even the TV version of Stardust Witch Meruru would get away with a TV-Y7FV.
- In blatant foreshadowing for how this series will end (because spoilers love me), to avoid being snitched on for pornbrowsing on Kirino's laptop, Kyosuke accompanies her on a research trip in Shibuya (on Christmas Eve, no less) for a professional light novel she's doing. This kinda counts as the Christmas episode.
- Months ago, Chaps told me the scene where Kirino told Kyosuke to get hit by a car (FOR
SCIENCERESEARCH!) was where he really started to get sick of Kirino. It would've been the same for me (in all fairness, it was a bitch move), but her reluctantly agreeing not to after Kyosuke talked her down from it kept me from experiencing any animosity. (It helps that I took out most of my anger hours beforehand on this random person who kept calling me and hanging up for ten minutes straight.)
- The rest of the date research trip was sorta meh. Nothing too exciting there, though Kirino randomly dumping water on herself (where'd that bucket come from anyways?) to show Kyosuke that her writing's not just about self-gratification was oddly moving. Mono no aware, baby. Even in light novels, it's a Japanese institution.
- Really glad the love hotel scene was just there as a convenient place for Kirino to take a shower (and accuse Kyosuke of being a perv) and didn't escalate into anything further. But still, BLATANT FORESHADOWING.
I was expecting Kyosuke to get bitchslapped, given he was in a short clip of the OP, and I'm really glad he wasn't.
My inner thoughts on rating the episode:
- Kyosuke: "I'd already be pissed at that point."
- Me: "Hm. Now that I think about it, this episode's awfully tame so far. TV-PGL."
- Kuroneko: "...the goth-loli girl obviously modeled off of me is raped and murdered."
- Me: O_O "Well, that escalated quickly. TV-14, maybe TV-14D."
In the end, I gave it a TV-MA. Much like episode 3 of Desert Punk
(which you can read about in the Review Challenge thread), this was less the result of one specific scene and more that of various moments throughout the episode. Kuroneko's stand-in being raped and murdered in Kirino's fanfiction, Kirino's stand-in being turned into a sex slave in Kuroneko's fanfiction, the commentary on the uncut Meruru transformation sequence, Kuroneko's further comment about anime trying to mix porn and lolis without getting in trouble with the authorities, Kirino's professional light novel idea being an eroge setup, the love hotel scene where nothing happened... I'd be crazy to slap a TV-14, subratings included, on an episode with all that.
Episode 8: My Little Sister Can't Be Animated (originally posted June 12, 2015)
Months have passed since Kirino created My City ("It's only been three weeks-" "Months. Have passed.") and after one volume and impressive fan response, her novel is being made into an anime. However, the anime staff shoots down most of her ideas and sends her into a brief depression, so it's up to Kyosuke to fix it.
Without a doubt, my favorite part of the episode was when Kirino was listing off all of her ideas to the staff. Now before you say anything, let me explain. I admit, a lot of Kirino's suggestions were extremely ambitious (an assumed two-cour run, 52 theme songs, specific voice actors and animators) and in one case self-absorbed ("Super" original work?), and the staff had a lot of good points about scheduling and where the money should go. However, I'm the kind of anime fan who likes to write original ideas and then come up with detailed staff and cast lists for each chapter/episode. Seeing Kirino practically do the same for her ideal anime adaptation of My City really struck home with me, and for all her crazy ambitions, I can't help but respect her dedication in the only way I can.
Even so, though most of the staff had great points, the head writer (Mitsuno, nicknamed Yamakan by Splitter) was a total dick. That's not to say all of his points were bad. A few original episodes to explore the setting and character development? Sure, I can deal with that. Changing the main character's gender to make it more identifiable and realistic? Now that's just compromising the original work, and forgoing the fact that anime is a means of escaping reality (and yet people complain about plausibility in anime anyways...). Plus you think changing the gender would make "Onii-chan" more sensible, but why not change it to "Onee-chan"? It's a simple change you never even considered!
That said, as satisfying as it was for Kyosuke and Kuroneko to see Kirino disappointed at being talked down, it was satisfying for me to see Kuroneko lay into Mitsuno (who she recognizes as a failed novelist). Sure, Kirino's disappointment may be enjoyable, but when it comes to adaptation, personal matters should be kept out of consideration on what to do. Just adapt to the best of your ability.
And in the end, most of her ideas were considered. Most of them. At the very least, they decided to keep it one-cour with only one or two theme songs, and some original episodes to expand the plot. At least, that's how I think it went, anyways.
While her name is cool, Iori Fate Setsuna was just kinda... there. So I doubt she'll return anytime soon, unless the plot wills it.
Random mecha anime scenes in the background are random.
So next episode is the last piece of advice. I call bullshit on that, but still, I wonder what it'll be...
Overall, it was a nice episode. 8.5/10.
Rated TV-14. This was probably the tamest episode yet, even tamer than episode 6. If it wasn't for various nitpicks that pushed it to the final rating (the "for exclusive use by anime otaku" threat, erotic character designs, Kuroneko accusing Kyosuke of being a sis-con and masochist), this episode would've gotten by with a TV-PGD (TV-PGDV if you count the background mecha action).
Episode 9: My Little Sister Can't Be This Absorbed Into Eroge (originally posted June 29, 2015)
This time, I'll focus on each of the female characters (minus Manami, because she didn't show up this episode).
First off, Kirino. I'm honestly torn at this point. On one hand, watching her play her new little sister eroge was both fun, moving, and amusing, especially when Rinko (the tsun-tsun little sister) started insulting her, proving that even the game hates Kirino. That and she was totally getting off on hearing Miyabi (the dere-dere little sister) telling her "I love you". On the other... WHAT A BITCH. I mean, sure, I can understand her slapping Kyosuke for looking at her panties, even if it was a little cliche, but was there any reason for her to act all shitty to him when she came downstairs at the end? God, any more of this shit and I'll be venting about my own sister troubles to all of you who are still bothering to read this crap.
Kuroneko is awesome. That's what I should've said the last two times, with her blunt honesty, sympathy with Kyosuke, and general distaste of Kirino's writing style. This time, it applies too, even though she barely interacts with Kirino this episode. It was really sweet seeing her interact with her own little sister, to the point of watching an anime she can't stand (read: Meruru) with her. Her phone conversation was a little strange, though. No matter.
Meanwhile, Saori's actually rich. And she has a nice house. Not to mention she has enough money to buy custom maid outfits for her, Kirino, and Kuroneko to wear for a future event that she hasn't figured out yet. I think I like her more now.
Then there was that random bit with Ayase doing some modeling. Her thinking that Kirino's blowing off work to study for school proves that she's pretty much forgotten that she's an otaku. Didn't her last episode end with her deciding to accept Kirino's interests, on the stipulation that Kyosuke doesn't do anything lewd with her? Yare yare daze...
Still, as painful as their interactions this episode were, Kirino and Kyosuke arguing with each other through the wall and punching said wall in response was surprisingly fun, though that was mostly for ratings purposes.
I liked the practical ubiquitousness of the picture of Kirino, Kuroneko, and Saori this episode. Very nice.
My horoscope today told me not to get angry over trivial things because I'd be the one getting hurt. I haven't had anything like that happen me today yet, but Kirino getting frustrated over her eroge came very close. Maybe this episode acted as a conduit to show me what would happen if I did get angry over trivial things? Ah, whatever, astrology is complicated.
Rated TV-14DLS. At this point, eroge has become so involved in the plot that the mere mention of it could just get a TV-14, TV-PGD at the very least (much like that Space Dandy episode that mentioned Boobies but got a TV-PGV of all ratings), but the suggestive dialogue/sexual situations here came from Kirino's eroge, namely the unseen sex scene with Rinko and Kirino's very loud reaction to it, not to mention her little fight with Kyosuke through the wall. From just that, it was so obvious. The language came from Kirino dropping the s-bomb, and maybe saying "pissed off" a whole bunch. There's also Kirino showering, but much like episode 5, it wasn't at all sexualized.
Episode 10: My Little Sister Can't Be Cosplaying Like This (originally posted July 6, 2015)
This week, Ayase got into a little spat with Kirino over her Meruru figures, and wants to make it up to her with something, but since she doesn't want anything to do with buying indecent stuff, she's having Kyosuke pick out the gift for her. After much deliberation (read: a trip to Akiba with Kuroneko and Saori), Kyosuke comes up with his choic of gift: an extremely rare Meruru figure that can only be attained if one wins a Meruru cosplay contest.
With that synopsis out of the way, here are my thoughts on each of the girls this time.
- Kirino is still fairly bitchy, though thankfully not as much as last week. Her bitchslap of Kyosuke wasn't as uncalled for as last episode's (he was being kind of an incestuous smartass with his blatant foreshadowing) and her stomping on his foot, I'll just consider an annoyed reaction to him being somewhere she'd rather not have him be at. It kinda amused me that she's not just a bitch to Kyosuke, but her own friends too. Which leads to my main problem with the episode...
- Ayase. Man, f**k Ayase. Her attitude towards Kyosuke's fairly good intentions (as indecent as they may have seemed) was downright aggravating, to the point of making her attitude towards Kirino's otaku interests (which she's at the very least tolerating) in episode 5 downright bearable. From the overreaction to the actually kinda tame cosplay contest to the punch she gave Kyosuke for his continued insistence on her participating, I couldn't help but feel a great need to punch her in the face repeatedly. It's a good thing he's skilled at convincing people to do stuff, otherwise she would've acted like a petty bitch the entire episode. She was actually tolerable during the second act (and very clever too!), and her not punching Kyosuke for his comment that Kirino actually would've liked seeing her cosplay was a good representation of that.
- And then there's Kanako, Kirino's other friend and Ayase's means of agreeing to Kyosuke's cosplay contest suggestion without actually doing any cosplaying herself. Even though I saw screencaps of it five years ago, it's only obvious that she'd look just like Meruru and play the part extremely well (down to the same voice actress), even if she is kind of a brat. Eh, at least she's better than First Act Ayase. Also, considering her idoling skills, I think she might have savant syndrome (which I knew about thanks to the episode of Terror in Resonance I watched afterwards).
- Kuroneko and Saori are still the best girls. I'm slowly warming up to Saori's "Ye Olde Japanese" talk again, and I found great amusement in Kuroneko feeling despair for a MASCHERA DVD that was on sale before buying it. Hey, if it's cheap and you like it, might as well buy it.
- Nobody cares about Manami.
- The previous winner of the Meruru Cosplay Contest (Bridget) was actually pretty cute. Shame Kanako had to make her cry, though.
Kirino showing up at the cosplay contest was surprising at first, but at second thought, it should've been predictable. I know, I'm kind of an idiot like that.
I like Kyosuke's manager persona, I hope we get to see more of Kouhei Amagi in future episodes.
Of course there'd be at least one fat cosplayer.
A BIT OF DIALOGUE
- Kyosuke: "Do you think you can win against her, even if you put on a knockout performance?"
- Ayase: "I won't put on a knockout performance in the first place!"
- Me: "IT WAS A RHETORICAL QUESTION, YOU STUPID BITCH!"
Rated TV-14DLS. It was a tough call, really. With Ayase calling Kyosuke a pervert three times, all the talk of indecency, just the one instance of "bitch", and the generally irrelevant doujinshi covers (one of which was called Comet Prostitute), it feels like it should be rated lower. So let's just consider this an "overshoot" rating. There was also some surprising violence moments (explosions in Justeen, Ayase punching Kyosuke in the face, Kanako throwing a prop wand that conveniently hits Kyosuke in the neck) but they were all moderate so no V there.
[what good is an anime if the mc isn't abused]
Episode 11: My Little Sister Can't Be This Maid (originally posted August 13, 2015)
This one was done Blatch-style.
The first half of the episode was simple enough. Kyosuke's parents are going out of town because reasons, and since he doesn't know how to make anything but curry, he invites Manami over to cook dinner for him and Kirino, and maybe even tidy up the house a bit. Simple enough, right? Well, if you haven't figured it out, Kirino hates Manami's guts, especially after she cleans the living room and messes with her stuff, so she decides to ruin things between her and Kyosuke by setting him up as some sort of pervert. Namely, planting her laptop (complete with eroge) on his desk and spreading his megane magazines all over his bed.
Now, I'm not one to hate on anime, even if they're technically not all that good, but this episode was definitely my least favorite, because of that whole scene in Kyosuke's room. You'd think my problem with it stems from Kirino being a bitch towards her older brother, as per usual. That's not the case here. The reason that scene drew my ire was because of how Kyosuke responded to the situation. Or rather, how he didn't respond. If my little sister opened an eroge on her laptop and then placed it on my bedroom desk in an attempt to make my cute childhood friend hate me forever, my first response to it would be to close the f**king laptop. So much drama could've been avoided if Kyosuke just closed his laptop, which is a more effective means of hiding scandalous imagery than covering up the screen with your person or even pressing the escape key. Hell, shutting the damn thing down would've been equally satisfactory. But no, he just had to spaz out over the presence of Kirino's PC and the eroge displayed on it instead of using common sense. Just pissed me off, y'know?
Kirino may have been at fault for setting Kyosuke up the bomb, but Kyosuke is just as guilty for failing to defuse said bomb. He might not have been able to keep Manami from seeing his gravure mags, but he could've at least taken care of the laptop. And because he didn't, that scene has the honor of being my official Dethroning Moment of Suck for Oreimo.
[sigh] Well, at least Manami wasn't too turned off by the whole situation...
The second half was much better, but it started out being so only by a little bit. Remember two episodes ago when that well-mannered rich girl who was clearly Saori bought three maid outfits and tried to figure out the event she was gonna have Kirino, Kuroneko and herself wear them for? Well, that event turned out to be an official celebration for Kirino's light novel getting an anime, but it also doubled as a party to cheer up Kyosuke because he's been so f**king gloomy lately. For the latter part, each girl came up with three events in their attempt to cheer him up.
The first, Saori's, was the maid outfits. I must say, Saori looked great in her outfit, and a Kuroneko is fine too. Kirino looked alright too, I guess, but that's because I like maid outfits. It only made Kyosuke feel uncomfortable, but I'm sure that was mostly the "Kyosuke Kousaka's Personal Harem Group Party Room" banner that they hung up.
Speaking of uncomfortability, the next event, Kuroneko's, was an incest manga she wrote whose characters just so happen to look like Kirino and Kyosuke. Obviously, neither one was happy about that.
And while it was pretty kewl to see Kyosuke bitch out Kirino for being so, well... bitchy, the last event, which was of course Kirino's, was kinda sweet. As if she finally got off the rag she's been on for ten to eleven straight episodes, she finally apologized to Kyosuke for being such a bitch at the most inopportune times, and also thanked him for making life as an otaku easier for her. She also gave him a gift, which was that game she played in episode 9. Partially a gag gift, partially a thanks that only Kirino would give. That certainly cheered Kyosuke up. And she didn't even lash out at him in the end!
So yeah. The first half was eh, the end of the first half made me wanna punch Kyosuke in the face for being an idiot, and the second half wound up being pretty alright. 7/10.
- I admit was kinda confused by Chaps' claim a few posts back that Kyosuke and Kirino's mom was one of the best girls. Her playful reaction to Kyosuke's assumed pornbrowsing made me realize that he may have had a point there.
- I expected Kirino to turn around the moment she saw Manami and Kyosuke.
- "That's so ghetto!"
- Is that Nina from Code Geass, and if it is, why isn't she humping any tables?
- Aniplex translated Saori's name as "Saori Vageena". It's like they're forcing us to admit that her name is synonymous with "Sour V****a".
- I'm jealous that Saori can just put up with Kyosuke and Kirino's excessive bickering like that.
- "God, you're so dense!" If Kyosuke makes another stupid move like he did this episode, I'm rooting for Kirino to punch him.
- So when are we getting Kirino's last piece of advice from Kyosuke, show?
CONTENT RATING: TV-MA
Really, it should've gotten a TV-14DLS, but I rated it higher for two reasons. First, the last two episodes were already TV-14DLS and I didn't wanna look too redundant. (Silly, I know. ) Second, the content of Kuroneko's incest manga was just too much for me to keep it at the TV-14DLS earned by the general eroge stuff, pornbrowsing accusations, Kirino thinking about having sex with a man, the gravure magazines, and Kyosuke's s-bomb. That and the picture of the Manami-type character in the manga. Pretty sure I saw some fluids on there...
Surprising, given the anime was made in late 2010.
[or maybe not, since it started in the summer]
And that's all I have so far. Expect the episode 12 review within a few days.
I can't believe that you've mentioned me twice within these posts. I feel as if I've done more for you than any U.S. politician (sans John Kasich) ever will. It's beautiful.
Now, I'm not sure if reposting everything on the new boards is a good idea. I didn't do it for my Squid Girl reviews, and my link to an Internet Archive mirror of the old thread probably brought some very nostalgic feelings about the old [as] boards to those who dared to click on it. Still, I'm looking forward to how you'll continue (and ultimately end) this saga.
Fair enough. If anyone wants to read the first 11 posts in their original unabridged format, click here.
And seeing how I've put it off for too long, plus Hulu's retraction of its initially forecasted expiration, the review for Oreimo 12 should be expected tonight, if not early tomorrow morning. Only then, will you know my thoughts on episode 12.
[probably more positive than yours]
In season 2 the siblings totally hook up.
Here in Cloud Cuckoo Land, there are no rules: There's no government, no baby sitters, no bedtimes, no frowny faces, no bushy mustaches, and no negativity of any kind. And there's also no consistency.
You think I don't know that already?
All that aside, here's a little something I should've done a long time ago.
Episode 12: My Little Sister's Advice Can't End Here (GOOD END) (originally posted June 1, 2016)
In a move quite unlike what we've seen of her thus far, Kirino has been acting awfully nice, and not just to everyone she's normally nice to. She's recently included Kyosuke as a recipient of her polite personality, which is honestly kind of creeping him out. More on that later. Right now, we finally catch wind of what that final piece of advice Kirino wanted out of Kyosuke was. The task is simple enough at first: go to a midnight eroge sale in Akihabara, pick up two eroge she ordered, and play through a route on one of them with her. However, it's only after being blueballed out of being shown her secret photo album that he learns the truth behind her final advice, and why it's the "final" one.
In case you forgot, Kirino is somewhat of a track star at her school, and her skills at summer camp were so good, one of her coaches wanted her to go to America for extra training; an endeavor that would last until she's ready to enter high school. Her parents knew about the trip, and helped her raise some of the money for it - the rest came from light novel sales - but Kyosuke was left in the dark, because Kirino assumed that he wouldn't care that she'd be leaving the country. Hence why she was acting so nice to Kyosuke earlier; to try and show him some of her rarely-seen compassion before leaving for a year or so. All in all, she wanted to have him see her as a good, if not occasionally demanding, sister before her departure, regardless of whether or not he knew she would leave beforehand.
Naturally, Kyosuke wants her to leave. And naturally, Kirino is offended enough by his insistence that she starts whaling on him - ineffectual punches and a surprisingly effective headbutt, to be specific. But it's only after their scuffle results in a route option from their game - one that's oddly parallel to their situation - accidentally playing that Kirino starts to think things over. In the end, she decides to stay in Japan and live life as she had in the past. And Kyosuke, used to the Kirino we know and hate, is perfectly fine with that.
Of course, if this were some alternate universe where incest is somehow even more taboo than it already is, this would have been the end of the Oreimo animated franchise; an anime original ending created in the event that the series didn't sell well. However, the fact that this is the "Good End" implies that there's another path; one that follows the original light novel. Under that assumption, it's safe to say that that path is the true one, and this was created as a "what if" scenario. Or even better, a meta-reference to the series' presence of eroge. So yeah, this isn't the end, even though it is, in a way.
Not much else for me to say, really, especially since this is my first time in a long time doing this. All I can say now is that Kuroneko doing her catgirl-posing thing in the mirror at the end was cute, as was Mr. Kousaka acting all embarrassed at being put on the spot (no homo). Kyosuke having an "I won't tell if you won't tell" situation with his friend Akagi was fun too.
Speaking of Akagi and "homo", this episode was rated TV-14DL. You'd think either the institution eroge talk has become on this show or the ridiculous eroge title "I Definitely Didn't Steal Onii-chan's Underwear, Okay!" would account for the suggestive dialogue rating, but you're wrong. In fact, the big deciding factor in that regard was "Homo Game Club", the über-macho yaoi game that was on sale alongside OniUnd. Kyosuke accusing his friend Akagi, who was getting the game for his fujoshi of a little sister, for being a homo himself didn't help matters. The language, disappointingly enough, was just one use of "bitch", which is to be expected when Kirino bitchslaps you out of nowhere.
[oreimo 13 review coming whenever]
Episode 13: My Little Sister's Advice Can't End Here (TRUE ROUTE) (originally posted June 8, 2016)
As can be implied from the title, this episode is pretty much the last one, but with a multitude of differences.
Apart from the subs that mysteriously landed in my lap switching out "advice" for "life counseling", the first act was exactly the same. Kyosuke is weirded out by Kirino acting nice to him for once, his last piece of advice to her is to buy her some eroge she ordered, he goes to Akiba and gets it, but not before running into his friend Akagi and experiencing a misunderstanding of homosexual proportions. At this rate, I was expecting the second act to be the same, only with Kirino leaving for America instead of inexplicably deciding to stay just to spite Splitter.
Turns out expectations don't work out the way you want them to. The differences between this episode and the last start not at Kirino's offscreen mental processes, but the speed at which Kyosuke picked up OniUnd and CusImo. Instead of picking it up and having enough time to catch the last train to Akiba, he instead finds himself stuck in line longer than he liked and missing the train. At first, it looks like he has no way back home other than his own two feet, but thanks to some quick thinking and his special ability to get people to listen to him with the classic begging position, he convinces a friendly bespectacled otaku to lend him his custom OniUnd bicycle - which was nothing more than a visual joke about how far otaku are willing to go in their love for certain properties last episode - and rides it back home.
From there, apart from Kirino being a little grouchy waiting for Kyosuke to return and Kyosuke taking a shower to rid himself of the smell of biker's sweat, things pretty much play out the same way. Kyosuke returns, gives Kirino the eroge, is asked to play them with her for old time's sake, and before going to bed, Kirino decides to show him a little something else of hers; something she wouldn't have shown him, were she not acting kind to him for once before leaving for America the next morning.
And no, that something is not the scat eroge she accidentally bought due to her not knowing what "sukatoro" meant. One of the few cases where her bitchslapping Kyosuke for saying something stupid was not only not uncalled for, but actually kinda funny.
That something is a box of personal mementos. She's about to show him a photo album, but as if knowing that saying yes would cause her to get defensive and refuse to show him the contents, he declines her offer to take a peek at it. Oddly enough, Kirino complies to his request understandingly and instead shows him a box containing some of her track medals, plus a series of report cards chronicling her improving gym grades. It was a surprisingly cute scene, mostly because it was one of those moments where not only were they not at each other's throats, but Kirino didn't even act malicious towards Kyosuke once.
Of course, after that's all said and done, Kyosuke heads to bed and the next morning, learns from his parents that Kirino left for America to go to track and field camp. He's surprised that she didn't mention it, but ultimately alright with it, since it means for the time being, he doesn't have to worry about being thrown under the bus or anything like that.
Fast-forward a few weeks or so to the first day of the new school year, and in comes the other big reveal of the "true route": Kuroneko is now attending Kyosuke's high school, and is unofficially his kouhai.
So yeah, really nice episode. Can't wait to see how the rest of the follow-up episodes to season 1 play out.
Stray observations: Kirino talking about how clearing one route in a game can open up the path to alternate routes was notably meta, considering this was the faithful-to-the-LN alternate to the anime original ending; and I found Manami's playful threat to call Kyosuke "Onii-chan" rather amusing. It's likely he doesn't want her to call him that because it'd remind him of how bitchy Kirino can be, but I personally think it's because he doesn't want to be any more embarrassed by his not realizing he could've just closed the lid of his laptop than he already is.
Rated TV-14D. Pretty much all the suggestive dialogue from the last episode, from the implied plot of OniUnd to whether or not buying a game called "Homo Game Club" while male makes you a homo by extension, was left in. As Kyosuke's altercation with Kirino was avoided this time around, the "bitch" word was avoided, as was the L subrating.
Episode 14: My Junior Can’t Be This Rotten (originally posted June 15, 2016)
Here it is, folks: the first episode without Kirino. We weren’t completely rid of her, unfortunately – the OP animation barring the eerie ending and discussion about her made certain of that - but still, quite the experience not seeing her in person, even for a brief cutaway.
Everybody’s least favorite girl aside, this episode was mostly about the character on the opposite end of the spectrum: Kuroneko. Or Ruri Gokou, if you feel like calling her by her real name. Anyways, she’s now a freshman student at Kyosuke’s high school, making them senpai and kouhai. Kyosuke’s cool with that initially, but after noticing that Kuroneko’s actively avoiding contact with her peers, be it an offer from classmates to go karaoke-ing with them or joining any clubs on Club Selection Day, he makes it his business to help her socialize with others besides him, Saori and Kirino. As a start, the two join the gaming research club, headed by the bespectacled otaku who leant Kyosuke his bike last episode (and wants it back). With her leet haxxor-level gaming skills, coupled with an interest in creating games herself, and possibly the idea that she could create a better “test game” than the stupidly easy (for her) REGALIA the gaming research club (GRC) set out for interested applicants, Kuroneko decides that joining wouldn’t be such a bad opportunity.
Of course, that doesn’t mean she’s too fond of Kyosuke sticking his nose in her personal matters. She puts up with it at first, but after he and Manami help her out with cleaning duty one day without asking her first, she makes it known that she doesn’t like it, viewing it as an act of pity. Furthermore, she claims that Kyosuke’s recent acts of kindness and connection are his way of compensating for the distinct lack of Kirino in his life. Surprisingly, Kyosuke doesn’t argue it, and concludes that this claim could be connected to her lack of socializing with her other peers. When asking Saori about this, he learns that this might be because she doesn’t want to lose what social connections she has with Kyosuke, Kirino and herself; that if she hangs out with other people, she might hang out with the others less and less. Which is why it’s always good to balance things.
Not much else is said about this, besides a scene at the end where Kyosuke tells Kuroneko he’s still gonna keep an eye on her, with Kuroneko admitting that she doesn’t really care anymore. As to what led to this change of heart? The GRC welcoming party, of course!
Besides Kyosuke and Kuroneko, the other new member of the club is Sena Akagi, another freshman girl who joined so she could learn to program and later design games. As to what games she likes? Those with homosexual overtones. As you might have expected from her last name, Sena is the fujoshi little sister of Kyosuke’s friend Akagi; the same one Akagi went out to buy “Homo Game Club” for. Kyosuke had a feeling she was that same sister, and in one of my favorite moments this episode, confirmed it by nonchalantly asking if she liked the aforementioned game. The reveal that she was a fujoshi was enough to shock the entire gaming club, but it only got worse when Kuroneko, who’s in the same class as Sena and dislikes her muchly (and vice versa), gradually egged her on into revealing how deep her homo-love goes: her favorite MASCHERA pairing, her admiration for properties that blur the line between 2D and 3D, and even fantasies about her own classmates! Creepy but oh so hilarious. Of course, realizing how much she spilled to her fellow clubmates, Sena soon sinks into a pit of despair, complete with multiple begs for death, that’s only fixed with Kyosuke calls up Akagi and asks him what to do. And since he won’t take the initial/works every time “tell her she’s cute and free of blame” option, it takes Akagi talking to Sena over the phone to get her back to normal.
So yeah, she’s bound to be a fun character.
A small, one-scene-only subplot I found interesting was Saori (now hanging out at Kyosuke’s place with Kuroneko) admitting that, though Kyosuke and Kuroneko are content with Kirino’s absence from their daily lives, she can’t help but be annoyed and angry at how she was shut out of contact with Kirino also. From being left out of knowing that she was leaving for America to not seeing her even online, Saori can’t help but feel a little pissed that Kirino’s ignoring her. Which Kyosuke easily amends by suggesting that they do stuff together that she could blog about later, to make Kirino feel how Saori felt. Because trolling Kirino is never not fun.
Overall, this episode was good, and not just for the obvious reasons. Can’t say too much, especially since I can’t into criticism like the rest of you experts, but what I can say, I’ll say below, because that’s what I specialize in.
- When I logged the episode title down on my ratings lists, I had a feeling the “junior”/kouhai in question would be Sena, considering her homo-love. But then last week, when I learned that Kuroneko was going to be Kyosuke’s kouhai, I reconsidered my judgement and thought the title was talking about her, probably acting sour and stuff towards Kyosuke. Which she did, but in the end, it turned out the title was referring to Sena all along. Maybe it referred to both of them? I’m not sure…
- I just realized, Saori says “de gozaru” at the end of her sentences quite often. Is that her attempt at a catchphrase? At least it isn’t as in-your-face as “desu”.
- MASCHERA has two seasons that we know of, and Kuroneko isn’t fond of Kyosuke saying it’s ended when the hope for a third hasn’t been snuffed out yet. I can sorta feel that.
- Some of the club selections I was able to recognize on Club Selection Day included calligraphy, archery, lacrosse, tea, and of course, gaming research. Not sure what club those guys in the gis represented; I’m guessing the karate club.
- KKK? That ain’t good…
- Saori totally ships Kyosuke/Kuroneko. Personally, I think she should join in and make it a threesome.
- Any episode where the worst abuse Kyosuke gets is a pillow thrown at his face is a good one.
- Kyosuke still has the GRC president’s OniUnd bike in his garage. Do his parents even know about that? More importantly, do they care?
- I like how those two big guys in the gaming research club do practically everything at the same time. Maybe they’re twins?
- “You look more like the kind to join the student council than the Game Research Club.” – Kyosuke on Sena’s appearance and pre-fujo-reveal attitude.
- Inside that bag is your favorite anime.
- “If you’re so rotten, then I’m sure you can even fantasize about half-real things like the Prince of Tennis Musical?” – Kuroneko, somehow referencing an anime both our universe and the Oreimo one share.
WHY?: This one was honestly a tough call. I knew this would be Sena’s debut episode, so I was alert for any potential TV-mature material, or at least anything TV-14D worthy. Saori playfully messing around with Kyosuke and Kuroneko by claiming the former is expecting sexual favors from the latter (as payment for “showing her a good time”) while groping herself was enough to clear that off my conscience, but I remained cautious for the moment Sena showed up and let her fujoshi flag fly. Most of it was fujoshi lingo and talk about loving homos, which didn’t falter the rating much. Her mentioning a fantasy where Makabe, the token cute boy of the Gaming Research Club, was gang-raped by the other club members almost did that. I was considering upping the rating to an MA, but after a coin flip and the thoughtful consideration that she didn’t go into explicit detail beyond the main idea, the rating remained as is.
And since I’m now doing profanity counts for each show I do (see my Initial D album), the only one this episode was Kyosuke telling Saori that they plus Kuroneko going out and doing something with Saori writing a blog post about it would piss Kirino off.
[he doesn’t trust the white box]
Snuffles was my slave name
- KKK? That ain’t good…
Meh. Just like the Krusty Komedy Klassic, it's probably a misunderstanding.