Eromanga Sensei is an anime adaptation of a light novel series by the same author as Oreimo. The story is about a pair of step siblings who are in the light novel business; the brother is an author and the sister is an illustrator. Both work on the same light novel but are unaware of it until late in the show.
It wouldn’t be an understatement to say that this was one of the most popular shows of Spring 2017. Proof is how Eromanga Sensei characters literally filled Pixiv from the day it debuted. The reason being cuteness and this being an adaptation of a work by Tsukasa Fushimi of Oreimo fame.
Let’s talk about the show’s animation since it’s directly linked to the cuteness. Eromanga Sensei has some pretty darn good animation. The show is filled with character acting moments which make the cast feel lively and expressive; the characters come to life with all those purposefully animated fluid movements. Many movements feel realistic, like Sagiri tying her side-tie panties in episode 4 (how often do you see someone tying strings animated with such detail and finesse?), her taking off her clothes in episode 5, the game of twister in the finale (yeah, many a of the good animation surfaces during slightly erotic scenes), her trying to get the doujinshi from Masamune in episode 12, or the two siblings talking from across the door while Sagiri is in a yuakata in episode 8, among others. This attention to detail with how the characters move stands out and makes the characters feel alive. This sakuga brings out some cuteness (or sexiness as in some Sagiri cuts) from the characters, as these scenes get some extra attention.
Most of the character acting sakuga involves Sagiri which explains why we have a “Sagiri Animator” position here, occupied by Keisuke Kobayashi. He has most certainly done a fine job in making Sagiri cute with all those finely animated cuts.
The cuteness is brought out through different camera angles, as said by the Sagiri Animator and the director in a Pixiv interview. They show the girls through different angles and focus on different body parts not normally seen. You can see for yourself how many shots there are of Sagiri’s feet or belly button, the former of which you don’t usually see that much in other cartoons, well drawn or not. However, many of these scenes don’t come off as erotic, rather they add some cuteness to the scene and the character in focus.
There is an overall polish here, both in the still and moving shots. Each movement is smooth and each detail is animated when it comes to it. It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that this is one of the best animated, and most visually appealing shows of Spring 2017.
We’ve explained what makes the show’s animation so good; now, it’s time enjoy the sakuga for yourself!
But the animation isn’t the only thing making the girls cute here. Eromanga Sensei is filled with colorful characters who have their weird quirks and are all amusing to watch. Sagiri is a shut-in and has an innocent and a not so innocent “Eromanga-sensei” side which she unleashes when she sees something worth drawing: usually a cute girl, or a specific part of a cute girl, or a cute girl in a questionable pose. Megumin loves teasing Masamune and acts like she has a lot of “experience” when she hasn’t even dated anyone. Muramasa seems like a very reserved character but has some cute moments when Masamune is involved. And Elf Yamada is just a ball of fun who’s a joy to watch. All of this adds to the cuteness of the girls which was already too much just with the visuals alone.
The cuteness in this show is unparalleled this season. The kawaiiness is so much that it kind of takes focus away what the anime really wanted to show regarding the two siblings achieving their dream together. Probably everyone who watched this show watched it for the cuteness, which is only part of what the show intended to achieve.
Let’s move on to whatever story this cartoon has. With the focus being on a brother and his sister, à la Oreimo, you can expect the two siblings to love each other in a non-sibling way. Whether that’s a good thing or not depends on your fetishes. But putting that aside, Eromanga Sensei is a pretty fun show. The main driving force here is the comedy brought to you by this extremely fun cast.
There are some weird plot developments along the way with regards to some characters which are somewhat off putting. They tend to come off as forced and just for the sake of building up the harem. We’re talking about Muramasa and her declaration of love to Masamune and his light novels, which is as blatant an attempt at creating a harem as it gets. Masamune helping out a girl isn’t too subtle either, but we would have preferred that over this attempt. We could have done well enough without this kind of development, but then that would mean that Muramasa shouldn’t have existed because that is the sole reason why she’s here. Elf Yamada works good enough as a rival. Muramasa is also Masamune’s first fan, but that is secondary to her being a part of the harem.
The incest stuff here could have been completely replaced by Masamune trying to pursue a normal sibling relationship with his shut-in sister. He even has a number of dialogues where he says that he wants to be a brother and treat Sagiri like a little sister. Although there really wasn’t any point in expecting them to not go down the incest route, it disappoints us to an extent because they had the setting necessary to developing a normal relationship, but never went with it. Masamune not wanting to be alone anymore and wanting a family is the perfect start to him wanting a normal sibling relationship with Sagiri. We even have Sagiri’s mom telling Masamune to take care of her daughter. Masamune misunderstanding Sagiri’s hint could have worked out better, as Masamune could have then tried to forget his feelings for Sagiri and focus on trying to live like brother and sister, but that never happens.
They don’t make much progress with the incest stuff either after giving that obvious hint that Sagiri is in love with Masamune, who also harbors similar feelings for her. But it is pretty clear that Eromanga Sensei leans towards the incest side given how Sagiri’s erotic manga was based on what she wanted to do with Masamune, and if the story were to progress further we might end up seeing the two indulge in some questionable activities.
But the main thing the director claims that the show is about is two siblings working together to achieve the goal of creating the best light novel ever. Masamune mainly writes those generic high school battle harem stories, and he decides to write an incest romcom story based on his own imouto (another proof of this show’s incestuous tendencies). This does make for some interesting events as we learn the reasons why the two are in the this business, but none of that matters in the end anyway since the kawaii girls and the comedy take away from whatever focus the story should have gotten.
In the end, Eromanga Sensei probably doesn’t have what it takes to replace Oreimo as the next big incest show since the incest didn’t get enough focus, but it still is a very enjoyable show with great comedy, a really fun cast, and lots and lots of sakuga.
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