OP: 「カワキヲアメク」 (Kawakiwo Ameku) by Minami
“Will You Do It With Me, Here?”
NOTE: IF YOU DON’T KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT THE SERIES AND INTEND ON WATCHING THE FIRST EPISODE TURN AWAY RIGHT NOW. AVOID SPOILERS AT ALL COSTS.
If you hate drama and stupidity, you might want to give Domestic na Kanojo a hard pass. Otherwise, welcome aboard fellow passengers – especially those of you that thrive off chaos! It isn’t everyday that you’re introduced to your new step-siblings, and one is a teacher you’ve always been in love with while the other was the random stranger that you lost your virginity to. Such is the life of Fujii Natsuo (Yashiro Taku), an aspiring highschool writer caught between the overlap of dreams and reality. Only it doesn’t quite play out like he would have hoped. Your conductor for this train wreck will be me, Zaiden. So let’s get on with examining the post-mortem for this wonderful mess!
Having read what’s been released of the manga, I will confess that I’m invested in Domestic na Kanojo for mostly the wrong reasons. To the uninitiated, wacky storylines are Sasuga Kei’s claim to fame thanks to GE Good Ending. And as you can see from the first episode, Domestic na Kanojo proves no exception to this trend. Water is wet, teenagers do stupid shit – like shagging a stranger you’ve just met for the sake of it. But at least they used protection. It really could have been worse. That said, it’s interesting to look at the respective motives for Rui and Natsuo, when it comes to why they lost their virginities to one another. From Rui’s perspective, she doesn’t believe she’ll ever find true love, a jaded outlook for sure. But she remains curious about what sex is like and is tired of only hearing anecdotal stories from other people. The anime or the subs don’t quite make it clear, but in the manga, she expresses that she wanted someone she couldn’t care less about, meaning there would be no emotional strings attached. Rui also doesn’t want to be taken for a spin by a playboy — which is why she ultimately picks our cherry boy MC to do the deed. And do the deed they did. Although there was no full-blown sex scene (but really, what could we have expected for something that aired on Japanese TV?), we get some flashbacks from Natsuo, showcasing the passionate looks on Rui’s face during their loveless love-making.
On the other hand, I really liked Natsuo’s general reactions. Perhaps some people might accuse our protagonist of being a boring nice guy, but I digress. He doesn’t think he’ll ever have a chance in high heaven to be with Hina, because she treats him like a kid and there are rumours that she’s already got a boyfriend. Contrasting with Rui’s motivations, he decides that having sex with another person because it will help him get over his unrequited feelings. At least that’s what he tells himself, considering he evidently caught onto the similarities she had with Hina. At first, he’s elated that he got to experience sex for the first time. But then, he questions whether it was the right way to lose his virginity. That he didn’t have feelings for the other person, and ended up betraying his love towards Hina-sensei becomes a source of burdensome guilt. Though his logic may seem tortured, I’d say it’s a rather natural progression of emotions in such a situation, with both his confusion and angst being understandable. The key thing for me is that he demonstrated a sensitive side that’s rarely seen among male anime protagonists. His emotional dilemma might have taken place under ridiculous circumstances, yet I found it genuinely compelling because there’s honesty and warmth behind the way he expresses himself. He does stupid things but heavily contemplates his previous actions and clearly reflects on them, somewhat acknowledging his personal faults along the way. And that’s the only correct reason why I’m invested in this series – it’s because I truly care about Natsuo as a character from the bottom of my heart.
If you thought that would be it, the ride kept on ploughing onwards. Natsuo and Rui part ways, thinking that they’d never meet again. But fate plays them like a fiddle, and M Night Shyamalam hijacked the script. Natsuo’s father remarries to a woman who just so happens to be the mother of both Hina AND Rui. Talk about coincidences! And bam, just like that, they all move into a new house together. In the space of a single day, Natsuo now lives with the girl he loves as well as the random stranger he lost his virginity to, and they turned out to be sisters! Following a few segments of luscious ecchi (though I’m eternally disappointed they nerfed Hina’s oppai size), we end on a cliffhanger. Natsuo, unable to stave off temptation one evening, goes in for the kiss on a drunk and sleeping Hina. Rui walks into the room and catches him in the act! Admittedly, this delicious drama is something of a double-edged sword. There comes a point where it gets a bit too silly, but you can’t wait to see what happens next because it’s so damn unpredictable! For those who didn’t toss this show into the garbage pile, guess you’re all going to find out next week. Or you won’t be able to stop yourself from binging the manga — in which case may god save your souls.
Quick Impression of the OP/ED Themes
OP: 4/10 – Rough and edgy. The melody has its strengths but isn’t particularly memorable. I don’t think the visual sequences represent the story or characters very well.
ED: 8.5/10 – Nice and gentle. Awesome melody with excellent verse and chorus. Visual sequence was aesthetically smooth while providing a melancholic take from Rui’s viewpoint.
ED: 「わがまま」 (Wagamama) by Arisa Takigawa