I surprised myself by actually semi-enjoying the semi-adorable, Koo-koo perversions of Mayo Chiki!. This ongoing series (I watched up to episode 8--the next episode airs in Japan on September 2nd) is a gender-bending high-school comedy that's 90% insanely hyperactive schoolgirls in ridiculously short school girl uniforms. Those uniforms alone earn Ta-Ta Tuesday acknowledgement!
The title of the show Mayo Chiki! is a shortened version of the phrase "Mayoeru Shitsuji to Chikin na Ore to" which translates to "The Wavering Butler and Myself the Chicken." That's a fairly descriptive title. The main character of the series is Sakamachi Kinjirō (see the Chikin in his full name?) a very forthright, although slightly "wimpy," young man plagued by a a violence-loving younger sister, an absent mother who is a professional wrestler, rumors of his homosexuality and an allergic reaction towards women the series calls "gynophobia" (when a woman touches him his nose bleeds).
|Jiro believes that his nose bleeds because he's associated women with violence|
and his body has decided that if he bleeds then people will stop hurting him.
That is immensely sad. Someone should call Child Services.
Our poor Jiro-kun attends a school that is full of scantily dressed girls. In fact, there seem to be only two (well, three if you count one cross-dressing butler) male students...why this is is never addressed, so I assume we should just accept it as fact? As a result, Jiro is always on guard against nosebleeds and avoids contact with his female classmates, which is what leads those around him to believe that he is homosexual. The series itself (based on a series of light novels and a manga adaptation) begins when Jiro accidentally discovers that the most popular boy in the school, Subaru Konoe, is not in fact a boy, but a girl. Subaru attends school as a student, but also serves as the attentive butler to the wealthy and cruel (almost to the point of being sadistic) Kanade Suzutsuki, daughter of the school principal.
Why doesn't every anime series start with an accidental beaver flashing in the boy's bathroom? I suppose that's a question left to the great philosophers of our times.
|My junk! You saw my girl junk!|
A fight ensues as a result of Jiro discovering Subaru's secret. And Jiro, used to being beaten to a semi-pulp daily by his sister, proves himself tougher than he looks (he doesn't actually hit back, but he can take a punch). He is knocked out and wakes up chained to a bed in the school's infirmary by Kanade. She reveals the reasons Subaru must hide her gender and blackmails Jiro into keeping that secret. Kanade is a bored rich kid, though, and she cannot leave well enough alone. She is constantly conniving to make Jiro and Subaru's lives more complicated. As a result of their being thrust together, rumors begin to fly that Jiro and Subaru are dating (they really DO like one another...that's the cute bit). Later, in typical (goofy-as-shit) anime-style, Subaru's fan clubs get into the fray.
Yeah, I don't even know if any of what I just wrote makes sense, because I'm not sure if ANY of the series makes a whole lot of sense. It's goofy beyond belief and pervy as all get out, but also, admittedly, a little cute. There's just enough cuteness and sincerity to mellow out the annoyance the goofiness creates. Then again, I might not be the target audience. And this supposition raises one of the most important questions I feel that can be asked about this series (other than the one about beaver flashing)--WHO THE HELL IS THE TARGET AUDIENCE?
At first I thought, "Oh, it must be girls." The girls are the aggressors in the series in a few ways. They physically dominate poor Jiro, but they're also, especially in regards to Kanade, sexually aggressive. This at first led me to believe that this was a sort of backwardsly empowering bit of weird intended for high-school girls. It's certainly "cutesy" enough to warrant that audience. However, the anime also tends to use ANY excuse to get the characters naked. ANY excuse. Some of it bizarrely unreasonable. It's titty-city up in this series. There are BOOBS EVERYWHERE!
|Another scene with Jiro blushing because someone has thrust|
boobs in his face.
I have no idea who the target audience! None! All I can say is that they're a little pervy and enjoy watching girls mentally and physically torture, while both emasculating and TITalizing a high-school boy.
|As the leader of one of the warring Subaru fan clubs I am in favor|
of Jiro and Subaru's illicit love. I also have very ample ta-tas!
I'm not sure if I'll be continuing on with this series. It's cute. It's silly. It isn't complex or thought-provoking. It doesn't seem to have a lot riding on the plot. I keep finding myself asking "Who cares?" There's a little angst, alot of "will they/won't they" and some sweet moments, but I don't know that I care enough to slog through the rest of the pastel goofiness and random excuses for nudity. So, to sum up, I'll give it a solid MEH. If you're a fan of random boobies, then by all means go for it, see if it works for you. If you can handle the sort of silliness this anime entails, then this might be right up your alley. It's a so-so for me. I don't feel like I wasted my time watching it, but I wouldn't go out of my way to chase down new episodes. And I don't think I'll rush out to find the novels and manga this is based on.