um….

One day, the student council of a certain school encounter a poor young girl in a maid dress being harassed by two thugs, and immediately defend her. They end up taking the pink-haired beauty under their proverbial Student Council wing, explaining that she’s so beautiful that she meets the requirements to be in their council. The only problem is that she’s a -record scratch- boy. He explains that his parents landed themselves in mountains of debt after travelling the world, debt which was all lumped onto him for whatever reason and that the thugs were debt collectors who had forced him into the maid dress. The girls agree to pay his debt off if he becomes their ‘dog’ and continues cross-dressing.

At least the designs aren’t bad.

Let’s all play a fun game called ‘spot the problematic aspects of that synopsis’, shall we? So yeah. Himegoto is only a four minute show, but there are already several things about it that rub me the wrong way. For one, it literally opens with one of the debt collectors preparing to  rape ‘Hime’ and things only get more uncomfortable from then on.

I am going to guess that the entire series is going to be about this boy being abused and forced to crossdress for laughs. Now…I’m not against cute girly boys cross-dressing, and I think even the ‘forced to crossdress’ trope can be palatable at times, but this whole ‘dog of the student council’ business just reeks of bad taste. Not to mention the absurd lengths towards which Hime’s discomfort is fetishized…at which point it’s probably best to bring in a bit of background info for this series. Himegoto is based on a manga from a magazine called ‘WAaI! boys in skirts’, so I’m sure you can guess the content of the rest of the manga in it.  What really gets me is that this is literally the entire premise of the show, and that just seems odd to me because cross-dressing is such a well-worn trope in anime now that to have an entire premise hinging on ‘BUT THE CUTE GIRL IS REALLY A BOY!’ just seems really ‘…and?’ to me right now.  Basically every other anime that involved cross-dressing as a central component to the plot had something else to the plot as well, but all Himegoto has is that abuse component and some lame attempts at comedy.

Speaking of tropes – I can not believe that ‘reckless, faceless parents went and racked up a whole load of debt that they then threw onto their child without a care in the world’ is by now something that has happened enough times in anime to be a trope that I am sick of, but here we are. I kind of wish people could start being a little more imaginative regarding the reasons why somebody might be in debt, but then again I am clearly asking too much of a four minute fetish anime where characters have names like Unko (poop) and 18+ (no, really).

But to tell the truth…the reason this show disappointed me to the extent that it did was because I think deep down I…honestly wanted to like it. Because Hime is adorable. And I mean…he’s still adorable, in fact, most of the characters in this are.  But it’s just got too many problems for me to overlook – hell, even without the skeevy undertones there’s still the fact that it’s another annoyingly noisy comedy anime that thinks it’s funnier than it actually is…and that may be the gravest sin of all.

At least it was all over relatively quickly.

Out of 5,
melon1/2

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