I’m back!!! With a new style of my reviews, where I’d have a discussion topic.
My problem with most harem anime is their cliches that are always done over and over again. I’ve seen a fair bit of harem anime and I don’t hate most of them, and the ones I do hate is not for their cliches. But I get annoyed way too quickly at all their cliches from, tsunderes, constant misunderstandings, awkward situations, oblivious male, clumsiness is cute, indecisive lead etc. All these are presented in the anime I’m reviewing today.
Renai Boukun is an anime that aired early April of this year and has ended late June with 12 episodes. It follows Seiji Aino who gets involved with a cupid, Guri who has something called a Kiss Note (parodying Death Note) which can make two fall in love through a kiss. Guri gets Seiji to try and kiss his crush, Akana Hiyama who as it turns out has always liked Seiji (heck even more deeply than Seiji’s feelings towards her). Guri then decides to put herself in their relationship as well as Akane’s younger sister, Yuzu who is in love with Akane.
What Renai Boukun did so perfectly is how it executed it’s jokes. The anime is so self-aware at how cliche it is and how ludicrous it is that it turns itself into a satirical anime. The first part of the series focuses exclusively on these elements its only by the second half the anime takes a turn where they want to develop its characters which is does so beautifully. But it’s not a great plot that mocks its own cliches that’s the only ingredient to a great harem anime.
Every harem involves AT LEAST 3 love interests but it’s always obvious who the main one is. For Renai Boukun it is not as obvious. The harem obviously involves Guri, Akane and Yuzu mainly. However you can’t really tell who Seiji will choose since it could easily end up being either Guri or Akane, but it’s because of this that it’s more fun to choose a side, for me, I’m all for Guri. Every moment with Guri is fantastic, she is one of my favourite characters in all of anime and her development through the anime is so well-done. The other characters were all likable too, at first I found Yuzu whiny but I grew to like her and she actually is really adorable. I do like Akane but at some points I got annoyed at her and I’m not generally a fan of some yandere characters. Shikimi was interesting but not the most likable. I wish I had a better understanding of Akua, Seiji’s younger sister who is afraid of this penguin character. Speaking of the penguin character, I did get annoyed at how the anime constantly reminds me how he speaks from his eyes since they overuse the joke and he’s never fully explained but it only further emphasizes the anime’s ridiculousness.
Finally I need to talk about Seiji. He is a kind and quite plain teenage boy, you know like every other harem lead, he’s also very oblivious, like every other harem lead but it’s him being Guri’s voice of reason that makes him so much more likable… until the last episode, he really annoyed me, even if he did redeem himself in it, he still made me angry. But I do like his relationship with Guri and hope it is developed further in the manga.
I do highly recommend you watch Renai Boukun, it’s a very funny anime and is my favourite harem anime out there for executing every joke perfectly, having a character like Guri and not making its cliches feel so worn out. It’s an anime you can watch if you just want a simple comedy anime or a cute harem even.