I’m sure you know Otouto-kun from Bros before Shows. Early this year — way back last winter, in fact — we started talking on Skype about harem shows. I think they sort of exist right now in the “fanservice’ no man’s land, where very few people seem to want to take them seriously. But one of the first anime I watched as a thing that was different from anything else I could be watching was Tenchi Muyo. I still consider myself a fan of Love Hina, but only the manga I suppose (the anime pacing leaves me squirming at all the really awkward shit I can breeze through when reading myself).
Well, we took on a project. We’d watch a bunch of harem shows just to see. We watched a bit of A Good Librarian Like A Good Shepherd, which I went on to finish. We watched both seasons of Amagami SS (though we’re just a few short. His schedule changed). And yes, we watched Shuffle. Now back in my easy breezy early grad school days, where I was getting paid to browse the internet for odd pictures and had no classes, but my short story collection was basically done, I watched a lot of anime. Big surprise, huh? So I’d seen Shuffle already. But Otouto hadn’t. But he knew what happened in it. There was an interesting back-and-forth where O. would realize the shitty stuff in the backgrounds of these characters, but then we’d slide right back into “shit as normal.” You know. Until the end.
If I’ve had trouble watching anime with Kitty, I just haven’t had much of an opportunity to watch it with other dudes since anime club. So it was refreshing to watch a harem show — which, you know, caters to straight dudes — and be at least interested enough in ladies to discuss that aspect. It’s the closest I’ll get to the creepy dudes in the back of the classroom swapping porno mags around (seriously though, why is that a thing? Use the internet, protagonist and bro).
This moment is dedicated to Otouto-kun, who made watching shitty harem shows fun again (I actually hold that Amagami is better than some people say, but you see my point here).
Oh, and he watched me try to play some of the original Shuffle game. I… couldn’t make it very far. Wow it’s dumb.