「ネトゲの嫁は女の子なんですよ！」 (Netoge no Yome wa Onnanoko Nandesu yo!)
“My Net Game Wife Is a Girl Online!”
A pleasantly gamey finish to a good series.
An Explosive, Game-tastic Finish
For a series about a bunch of kids playing net games, this felt like the right kind of send off. While other episodes spent time in both the game world and the real world, this one said fuck it—game world it is! It was almost indulgent, which I liked in a finale. It was a safe bet that they would take the castle and hold it from Wallenstein, but the crucial how still remained, and it was fun seeing how they did it in their own way.
Speaking of Wallenstein, they felt a lot more natural this time. Maybe it was just that a guild like Wallenstein doesn’t feel like one that would go in for subterfuge, and would rather play the antagonists openly. This was a better fit for them, since they openly got to enjoy the challenge the Stray Cat-Princess Elite Guard was providing them, which all culminated in Bats openly admitting that he liked how crazy Master is. I know what he means!
As for their victory, it had all those feel good hallmarks. Everyone got to shine, even Ako, and especially Master. Rusian played his part but didn’t single-handedly save the day, preserving Netoge’s equanimous treatment of its protagonists. I laughed when Master still found a way to pay her way to victory, and potion-tanked Bats at the end. It all came out feeling good in the end, and though it was calibrated to do that and more than a little indulgent, I don’t mind. If there’s a place to do that, a celebratory ending like this is the place.
The Culture Festival Encore
Likewise, the culture festival was a bit of an encore, though it took a chance to tie some of the themes together. For Hideki and Akane, it’s that they’ve become better friends, both in the game/club and in reality. When Hideki calls her aibou (partner), and she smiles . . . D’AAAWWW, FRIENDSHIP FOREVER! For Ako, it was reinforcing how she shouldn’t run away from her problems, and should do her best. Hideki and Ako’s date, everyone watching Sensei sing (I guess it’s a thing the teachers put on? That came out of nowhere!), and the almost kiss—oh man, the almost kiss! Couldn’t they have given us a real kiss? Dammit Kyou, no one cares about housing in MMOs! Don’t interrupt the OTP kiss!
That aside, it was a good ending to a fun series. Final impressions below.
tl;dr: @StiltsOutLoud – It’s time for a big, flashy, funny victory lap as the Alley Cats & allies take down Wallenstein, & Ako almost gets a kiss #netoge 12 END
- Sette’s “accidental” “bluff” turning out to be a good distraction was amusing. I’m pleasantly surprised by how well the show utilized her, considering she’s so much lower level than the others—and they even tied back to the sacrifice theme from last week. She really helped.
- Akane is really getting behind the ran-ran. That’s the Akane Style~
- She called Rusian “anata” :3 D’aaawwww!
My first novel, Wage Slave Rebellion, is available now. (More info—now in paperback!) Sign up for my email list for a FREE sequel novella. Over at stephenwgee.com, the last four posts: I love sales jobs, Good realism is character realism, Dying idols, and Frictionless routines.
Coming into Netoge, I was hoping for a comedy along the lines of KonoSuba—a fantasy-adjacent comedy romp anchored by broken characters and a tsukkomi main character whose seiyuu has some serious comedic chops. Likening this to KonoSuba was a ballsy move, considering how well KonoSuba turned out, though I think my feeling that they were somehow similar has been vindicated. in other ways they’re different beasts, most notably in Netoge’s notable romantic focus.
The comedy was great. Once you get over the improbable premise (a four-person guild where three players are girls, and all four of them go to the same school, and also the person who the male lead had a crush on before is a teacher at that school), the comedy works. Ako and Kyou are nuts, Akane is tsundere, and Hideki is a reliable tsukkomi, with Akane helping him on occasion. Sensei and Nanako are nice additions too, more sane over all, but it’s the intersections between everyone’s personalities that makes the show shine. They’re not as bonkers as the KonoSuba cast, so Netoge isn’t usually as laugh-out-loud funny, but it is still plenty funny.
Romance is definitely Netoge’s shining element. This is a series with one male main character and three female main characters (plus several female supporting characters), and it’s not a harem show. Gasp! Now there ain’t nothin’ wrong with a harem show, don’t get me wrong, but variety is nice and I’m a sucker for a good OTP. Aside from one blushing incident from Kyou and the whole friendship subplot between Akane and Hideki, there’s no hint of any romantic feelings between anyone but Hideki and Ako.
As for the main couple themselves, they’re weaponized adorable. I know some people think that Hideki is stuck with Ako because she’s codependent, but shut up your wrong! Or you might be right, but Hideki seems to like Ako openly and without any sense of feeling forced to do so; he is the type who likes to help people, after all, as illustrated when he was helping out Sette before we learned she was Nanako. Ako really is the driving force of the series, and seeing her gradually become more confident and more willing to engage with reality has been sweet to see. It feels like there’s been real progress over the series, both for her and for their relationship. That makes the whole thing feel more worthwhile.
I’m happy I picked this show up, and there isn’t an episode I regret blogging, even when I had to pause in the middle of moving halfway across the country to crank one out. It’s funny, it’s lovey-dovey, and it’s an entertaining watch. Highly suggested, would blog again. Buhi!