This is good. Period. Full stop. Conversation over. Okay. As you were… Fine, I’ll review it.
What more do you want me to say? It’s a workplace comedy with an awkward romance plot thrown in. As we all know, I’m a sucker for both of those things. Especially when they’re together. So this is right up my alley. I like seeing how people work and the ways in which different industries and professions work. But on its own, that wouldn’t hold my interest for an entire series. So the comedic filter is a great way to hold me over.
And the simple fact is that I like observing the relationships between people. It’s my favorite part of any story – seeing how different characters interact with and play off of one another. Workplace comedies are excellent for that. And romance stories are all about that. Oh. And, in case it’s not obvious, I’m a huge fan of manga, anime, and video games. So… there’s that. Point is, it’s really a win-win-win, for me.
That being said, I’m loving what Wotaku ni Koi wa Muzukashii has set up in its first two episodes. The characters are each distinct from one another and have very enjoyable chemistry. Narumi, in particular, does a lot for the comedy through her exaggerated reactions to extremely small things. It reminds me a lot of another character we’ve somewhat recently talked about. But unlike that one, Narumi isn’t exactly lacking in confidence, which is nice. After all, not all geeks have to be wallflowers. Narumi comes across as flawed, but not unlikably so. She worries about things that probably don’t matter, and is a little immature, but that’s kind of the point.
By contrast, we have Hirotaka, who is a lot more stoic. But he’s not portrayed as especially serious or anything. It’s actually used to the point of comedy by making him seem a lot more serious than he is when he’s really pretty awkward, himself. He also has an amusing habit of comparing things in real life to videogames. Interestingly, despite not really being the lead, himself, he’s the one that was interested in starting a relationship to begin with. The scene where he makes the suggestion is hilarious because of how Narumi reads it. But the scene where his actual motivation comes out in episode 2 is both funny and genuinely sweet.
Another thing I actually like about this one is that it’s starting with the relationship. It’s just an angle I don’t see taken often enough (outside of supernatural or otherwise fantastical stories), despite how interesting it is. It’s not like one two people get together, that’s the end of things. It’s simply a change of their status quo. A new normal in which new stories become possible. The story doesn’t necessarily have to end with the leads getting together. And this one illustrates that by starting there, further strengthening that position by establishing that they already have some history with one another. That isn’t to say there’s anything wrong with the typical “falling in love” stories where things end with the characters getting together. But this is also interesting, is what I’m getting at.
The other two supporting characters – Kabakura and Koyanagi – are also exceptionally entertaining to watch. I’ll be honest. I wasn’t expecting their dynamic to wind up being what it was. I thought they were just going to be the older, wiser characters who the leads would turn to for help or whatever. And while that’s certainly true to some extent (they are literally the seniors of the main two, for one), they also aren’t exactly placed into some sage-like status as they’re personally/socially very much on the same (or at least comparable) level to Narumi and Hirotaka. They’re all dorks and I love them for it.
All in all, this show is delightful. And I’m looking forward to seeing how things go from here. These episodes were funny, charming, and generally refreshing. They’re hitting all the right beats, and that’s all I need in order to call them Super Effective. If you want an example of something else with a well established romantic pairing going through their relationship, check out Cardcaptor Sakura: Clear Card. Sakura and Syaoran are an adorable pair.
If you’d like to check Wotaku ni Koi wa Muzukashii out for yourself, it’s streaming on Amazon Prime Video. That’s all I’ve got for ya here. As always, thanks for reading, folks. Keep up the awesome.