In 2016, thanks to a website called Baka-Tsuki, I was able to read the english translated version of the Ero-Manga Sensei light novel up to the end of volume 4 (the anime covered up to the end of volume 3 so far). When I was done with volume 4, I joked to myself that Japan would probably animate this series.
And it happened.
To be frank, I was not that surprised, as this outcome was perhaps inevitable. After all, the author of the series is an extremely famous man named Tsukasa Fushimi. Better known as the creator of the series ‘Ore no imouto ga konna ni kawaii wake ga naie’ (My little sister can’t be this cute): The series that had once split the anime community into different factions, each supporting a different ship of a heroine and a MC. The magnitude of conflicts between these factions during ‘Oreimo War’ rivaled or even surpassed the that of conflicts during Nisekoi (another famous romantic anime)
*Oreimo war was real. It will always be remembered by those who lived through it.
However, even before Ero-Manga Sensei was aired, the show was being treated with caution. This was understandable. There were several reasons why Ero-Manga Sensei was treated with caution before being aired, and they were all related to the show’s predecessor.
The audience feared that the new show would do the same things that the previous work had done. Such includes the followings:
1. Oreimo had chosen the incest route. (Just like what the title said the show would)
2. The chosen heroine is the worst heroine. While she does have certain charms, her bad points outweigh them completely.
3.The MC, Kyousuke, did not end up with a girlfriend.
Many feared that Ero-Manga Sensei would not only instigate the next ‘Oreimo war’, but also end tragically. What was the point of 12 volumes, if the MC wasn’t going to end up with anyone? As the result, the public consensus stigmatized the show and those who liked it. As someone who enjoyed Oreimo franchise, I can still unbiasedly claim that the series is a trash. What is a trash, you ask? I will explore that later in another writing. However, what I can say now is this:
Oreimo was a trash that I enjoyed as guilty pleasure nevertheless.
I feel that this awareness and acceptance is pretty important for my fellow fans. I would love to say the show explored the themes of family bonds, sibling bonds and pure love. But really, the show amounts down to cute girls. That’s it. Having the courage to see the artwork as the way it is and accepting it is pivotal.
And is Ero-Manga Sensei the same….?
No……it somehow manages to become a trash that can perhaps even transcend the trash level of Oreimo……
I suppose the author Tsukasa learned something from his previous work, as this new work is refreshingly different from his old work. However, I am not sure what he learned, and I would love to ask him what it was. Because the show became an even better trash. Not only does Ero-Manga Sensei’s fan-service surpass that of Oreimo, but the new show’s female casts are mostly all…lolis.
Just what kind of vision did you have after finishing Oreimo, Tsukasa? Tell me.
However, after all things said, I ironically do feel that Ero-Manga Sensei is ultimately better than Oreimo in some sense. As contradicting as that might sound. This is because of the contrast between the two main characters (siblings) of these two shows.
In Oreimo, Kirino and Kyousuke are otaku siblings, whom pretty much the entire audience can naturally identify themselves with. However, the show does not carry this connection beyond than just a superficial level. There were only two moments when the show managed to strive further: the notion of social prejudice against otaku culture shown through a father (a representative view of one’s family) and through Kirino’s friend Ayase (a representative view of one’s peers). For the rest of the series, the only connection we feel with these two characters is that…we are also otakus, and that is all.
However, with Ero-Manga Sensei, we feel greater connection with the characters and they are no longer just fictional characters. They are people who share similar struggles as us, and this just makes the show engaging by tenfold. While Saigiri (The Ero-Manga Sensei) and Masamune are also otaku siblings like those in Oreimo, they are also working partners in a light novel industry. Seeing them strive towards their dream, encountering those who look down on their dream, facing several predicaments, overworking themselves and growing as individuals for their dream. Although these are not extraordinary characterizations, they nevertheless come across as refreshing. This is perhaps because we had anticipated the second coming of Oreimo and thus lowered our standards for this show. Regardless, the effect is achieved.
Overall, throughout the show, nothing really caught me off guard, since I had read the light novel. Except for one scene in the episode 11. Yes, we all know it. The return of Oreimo casts ( I would like to believe that this occurs after the end of oreimo series). Wow, man I was surprised. Was this in the light novel, or did I completely forget about it? The combination of the beautiful music and the scene made me feel the ‘feels’ a bit. The happiness and relief that Masamune felt as he saw a group of people vibrantly talking about his new work that he had poured his heart and ‘love’ into. It managed to get to me, as I could relate to him. And I think other artists, writers and creators can feel the same. The satisfaction of seeing others find happiness through the works they had dedicated effort and time to….
But will I be proud of liking this show?….Probably not.
*My female friend bought me this illustration book of Ero-Manga Sensei…..
now, I need to hide this as well as possible.
Do I actually think it’s a trash? Nah, it’s just a joke mate. Nobody can decide what show should be called a trash. IF you want to see what happens if you say something is a trash, click the link below. I re-clarify. I don’t think these two series are trashes.
*Edit: I was using some of the arguments my non-otaku friends used. I don’t mean them when I used them. Just wanted to learn new arguments that I could use through the debate/discussion