「告白と彼女」 (Kokuhaku to Kanojo)
“Confession and Girlfriend”

Well I’d say that ended as expected. Kazuya did the usual while remaining aggravatingly annoying; Mami revealed little while setting herself up as one tremendous future cockblock; and Chizuru, bless her soul, is right about ready to admit what we all knew a few episodes back. As for Ruka (and Sumi), well, someone’s got to pick up those participation ribbons sometime. What’s that, you expected some sort of resolution in the eleventh hour? Oh you sweet romance summer child. Considering Kanojo Okarishimasu’s manga is still ongoing, receiving a proper conclusion was never going to be in the cards, but given this series is actually receiving a sequel (who honestly saw that coming?), I’m inclined to overlook the ubiquitous romance copout. Not that next season will stop with the hair pulling insanity, but at least we might get some tangible relationship development. Anyways, onto those final impressions!

Final Impressions

If I had to quickly sum up Kanojo Okarishimasu, it would be that it’s your typical romance. While this series was always different from its brethren in its fairly unique premise (rental dates are not a universally approved concept, even for Japan) and college setting, at its core it embraced all the usual romance tropes and stereotypes with little effort spent on pushing the envelope. It’s not to say Kanojo Okarishimasu is especially egregious in any way, but this is one show definitely not top of the class for its genre.

Probably the biggest fault with Kanojo Okarishimasu is its characters, in particularly main lead Kazuya. Weak and shy males are the bread and butter of many romances and romcoms (harem varieties in particular), however Kazuya is probably one the worst thanks to such things as nonsensical lying and outright stalking. Couple it with a relationship premise based on maintaining a mutual lie with Chizuru whose efficacy could be considered exhausted halfway through the season (not to mention the transactional foundation of said relationship) and you’re looking at audience annoyance at best and disgust at worst. Of course, such character traits and rationalizations help a lot when it comes to providing gristle for the drama mill (many of the conflicts this season effectively wrote themselves given character motivations), but as series like Kimi ni Todoke show you cannot rely on drama and misunderstandings forever before the audience starts wanting something more. Kanojo Okarishimasu may have avoided the strategy’s worst excesses here—thanks in part to all four girls getting some time to shine and Kazuya not really being put on the spot—but there’s no guarantee it won’t revel in it when the next season fires up.

What stops the above from fully relegating Kanojo Okarishimasu to the romance background though are some fairly prominent moments of arguable brilliance. For all the aggravation Kazuya may bring for example, the kid shares some pretty interesting and endearing moments with the likes of Chizuru and (especially) Sumi, trading manufactured problems for organic development. While not enough to fully eradicate the aforementioned issues, these diamonds in the rough do help smoothen the edges of this series and indicate the potential to get some tangible and (dare say) lasting progression moving forward. Taken in isolation such things this season may not have been much or worthy of noticeable praise, but if Kanojo Okarishimasu provides suitable payoff in the future they’ll be what helped supply the final results.

Overall while I’d say my time certainly wasn’t wasted covering Kanojo Okarishimasu (Sumi best girl!), this is a romance whose lasting impressions will come down to how its sequel plays outs. Provide some measure of resolution, some form of closed ending, and it’ll be seen as necessary preparation, but continue in the same vein, and, well, it won’t be breaking any top ten list. Like many a romance before it all comes down to the ending we receive, and Kanojo Okarishimasu has at least one more shot to show us just what it’s really made of.


  1. Kazuya worst MC in recent memory coupled with Chizuru’s Waifu-Pantheon-Candidate character profile does generate an interesting mix. Sorry Pancakes, but Sumi’s too passive 😛

    Overall a nice series and looking forwards to season 2. That last half of the episode though was annoying, and the post-credit S1 epilogue was infuriatingly bleh.

    Despite using such a paint-by-numbers formula base, this series seems to be quite an accomplishment!

    1. Pft passive or not she’s a cutie pie and that’s all that matters to me 😀

      Personally I wouldn’t say the series is an accomplishment, but it certainly was on the proper side of mediocre. I honestly don’t expect much from season two, but I’m willing to be surprised!

  2. Hmmm… I think I disagree here. What made this show special was that the object of desire did NOT easily fall for the main lead. This alone makes it noteworthy in my book.

    The main problem is that Kazuya is such a terrible mix of insecurity and hardwired devotion that I find it very hard to sympathize with him. And if you really really REALLY want to scream in pain for his completely absurd idea of “support”, read the latest manga chapter.

    1. What it reminds me of most is Love Hina and at least the plot seems to move along more quickly than that, so I give the show a B. Kazuya is kind of an annoying character but honestly as yuujuufudan shujinkou go he’s not the worst.

    2. Mm no disagreement there Mentar, although personally I still believe the main strength here was the occasional moments of inspiration the series showed with scenes like Kazuya-Sumi and Kazuya’s internal struggles with his feelings towards Chizuru. While Chizuru doesn’t quickly fall into Kazuya’s orbit (fully agree that’s noteworthy of itself), it’s up for debate whether it’s enough to overcome the aspects of Kazuya’s personality which can really turn one off of this story.

      The show, at least for me, just trends too much towards the genre average to enable such things overcome those aspects which leave a bad taste in the mouth.

  3. Status quo is the King.
    What did you expect? a resolution?
    Go rewatch Toradora.
    Waifu gallery is nice, though. Pick your level of assertivenerss, from possesive (Ruka) to passive (Sumi), to straight out hostile (Mami, bless her black heart for providing salty counterbalance to all the sweetness) , with Chizuru stealing the cake for being sweet spot of balanced personality ideal.

  4. Overall great so far IMO. The rental idea adds a novel twist to the classic romcom formula, the characters (in particular MC’s friends) are well realised, in addition to the girls. MC is infuriating at times, but overall I felt not a wholly unrealistic portrayal of an angsty insecure college kid.

    Crucially the plot never went ‘full trainwreck’ as with other series of a similar nature (Domestic na Kanojo, Golden Time), and maintained a lighthearted tone unlike those series – both of which have been hugely important and appreciated.

    Yes nothing hugely groundbreaking, but excellent execution of the romcom anime. Has definitely been my favorite series this season, looking forward to Season 2. Wonder when we may get a release date for S2.

  5. “I must not cringe. Cringe is the enjoyment-killer. Cringe is the little-death that brings total ruination. I will face the cringe. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the cringe has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.”[1]

    *sighs* Goddamn, I can’t believe Mami still wants to string Kazuya along. I didn’t want to make the comparison, but Mami Nanami’s basically like that real-life anonymous POS woman who posted why she finds it fun to string along a guy with anxiety. If you’re a homie who hates Mami[2] for being such a terrible person prancing close to the moral event horizon, I honestly don’t blame you if you want to see her “mogu mogu‘d” worse than Madoka Magica‘s Mami Tomoe.

    On the bright side, Chizuru. While she has her snarky Aqua-like moments toward Kazuya (which are pretty justified given Kazuya’s “BRUH” moments), she really is as angelic as Illustrious (AL) if she goes as far as to help patch things up between Kazuya and Mami. It’s difficult to assume good faith towards people nowadays (doubly so on the Internet thanks to GIFT), but Chizuru does it anyway towards someone as shifty as Mami. After eavesdropping on that scene, perhaps Kazuya is thinking, “She’s too fine a wine for someone like me”[3], which is one reason (among others) why he can’t commit to an actual love confession to Chizuru.

    Another bright spot on this show is Sumi. Though her day in the limelight was short, Sumi can definitely relate to Kazuya regarding her own anxiety issues (and vice-versa). But despite that social anxiety (and with help from Chizuru and Kazuya), Sumi does her best anyway. Not to mention she really hits my soft spot for “shrinking violet” types like Ichigo 100%‘s Aya Toujo, Tokimeki Memorial: Only Love‘s Mina Yayoi and Amagami SS‘s Sae Nakata. And there’s a scene in the manga focusing on her and Kazuya that deserves to make it into season 2.

    On Ruka… Well, I like her genki, straightforward personality and her “ill girl” backstory makes her sympathetic. (Helps that Nao Touyama is good at voicing genki girls.) But her possessiveness and her penchant for forcing herself between Kazuya and Chizuru (as well as basically blackmailing Kazuya into dating her) makes her not so different from Mami in some aspects. That being said, I’d still choose Ruka over Mami (Nanami) anytime. I’m a bit disappointed this season didn’t contain the moment where Ruka calls out Mami for being manipulative, but include that scene in the second season and I’d gladly watch it.

    Finally, Kazuya. While I certainly facepalmed at his many “BRUH” moments, he’s still a pretty accurate depiction of a guy with anxiety issues–perhaps a little too realistic for comfort and with “E-rank luck” for good measure. It’s never easy living with anxiety, which is why I can’t get myself to fully dislike Kazuya. (And I also find heartwarming enjoyment in his interactions with the socially anxious Sumi.) Overcoming that anxiety, becoming a bit more assertive and committing to self-improvement is crucial to Kazuya’s character development (and to finding his own happiness). Now THAT is something I definitely want to see; bonus points if Kazuya gets tired of Mami’s manipulative BS and gets the guts to say to her face: “Silence, wench. I do not wish to be horny anymore. I just want to be happy.”[4] (Or something along those lines. One can dream, right?)

    I’ll probably still check out season 2 of the anime if it comes out since the seiyuu (Ten-chan, Rieri, Naobou, Shun Horie, and even Y.Aoi) and staff gave it their all. But I’m no longer as eager to read the manga (perhaps when there’s nothing better to read) since from what I heard/read from those who did, the manga is weighed down by stunted character development and propensity to drag out story arcs much longer than needed–problems that sadly got carried over to the anime adaptation. I do get the “emotion over logic” maxim of rom-com manga, but slogging through all that is not my idea of a good time. And unfortunately, there are tons of better, more interesting manga to read, whether in the same genre or not.

    (Note [1]: Finally saw that Dune (2020) trailer [a movie I’ve been looking forward to watch if it weren’t for ‘Rona-chan] and I loved how they included a portion of the Bene Gesserit Litany Against Fear. Hope the full version is delivered with a much bigger impact in the movie [provided ‘Rona-chan doesn’t make a box-office flop out of it].
    [2]: Reference to Veridis Joe’s YouTube video, “All My Homies Hate Mami.”
    [3]: To paraphrase the abridged version of Hellsing Ultimate‘s Pip Bernadotte. “You’re [Seras Victoria] too fine a wine for a lout like me.”
    [4]: That meme-y spiel introduced me to the sublimeness of Guts’ theme from the 1997 anime–and Berserk in general.)

  6. Ah, Kazuya. He made the best mistake/slip of tongue in a life time. All the stars and planets lined up perfectly that moment, and he had to ruin it. Even if I knew he was going to ruin it, still screamed after the credits. They’re really good at dangling that tiny bit of hope that Kazuya might improve. XD

    For some reason I really like the execution of this anime. It is near impossible to empathize with Kazuya, but I feel it is still possible to root for him to end up with someone. Currently I put Chizuru on top, with Mami last. Mostly because we got to know more about Chizuru, while Mami is still pretty much a mystery.


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