I clearly was insane when I said that I would watch this anime for review. To be very honest, while I tried to keep an open mind, I still felt very uncomfortable watching this show start to finish. Although, it probably isn’t for the reasons any of you will think. I tried to push aside some of my personal feelings and take the series at face value, but it continuously threw a lot of issues in my face that I really couldn’t ignore.
Super Lovers is basically about a guy, Haru, and his younger brother, Ren, and their growth as a couple. No, you didn’t read that wrong. Ren and Haru are not related, the younger being adopted into the family (which, by the way, has some weird dynamic I didn’t even fully understand) so this theme is constantly played out for the entirety of the series to make the relationship seem okay. But Haru has also known Ren since he was a very smol child. So… There’s that.
Let’s just… Get this over with…
So I before I get into some of the disturbances this anime consistently brings up, I will tell you about some of the things I took from the story itself verses it’s presentation. As a love story, and one that I think catered more towards yaoi fan girls than anyone else, I think it didn’t do bad in it’s dynamic in terms of personalities.
I don’t mind love stories, despite my demeanor. In fact, I like watching sappy love anime in my free time. But I also find that in anime, obvious tropes are always played off of. This actually was the same story, just with some different plot lines. It was the same dynamic (almost exactly) played out in Say “I Love You”, Ouran Host Club, Aoharu x Machinegun, not to mention it’s a very basic one in same-sex love anime as well. These ones were just off the top of my head.
It’s always the dashing and loving lead who’s charismatic and sometimes childish with the more reasonable, if not slightly awkward, partner who tends to take the submissive role in the relationship. Granted, Ren takes this to a whole other level, but at it’s basic value, this love story wasn’t actually awful. If I could I look past certain things, I might have actually liked it.
I guess, what I can say in totality, was that it made me laugh. I usually laughed when they blamed Ren’s social awkward tendnacies on the fact that he’d spent his childhood in the mountains of Canada. I have family up there, and let me tell you… This is not a Canadian thing… At all… But hey, Haruko was like, the best character ever. Literally. I would marry her if I could. I want a show just for her, no one else. Just Haruko.
Here we go. The reason I even thought to review this anime was actually a tweet from Lauren Orsini that I’d seen after the first episode had aired. She discussed that what had bothered her about the show was that it felt as though Ren was being groomed as a romantic partner right from the start. After watching the show in it’s entirety of the first season, I have to agree.
I understand that this is a certain type of anime that, for some reason, a lot of women in particular are attracted to. But it disturbed me a lot in the fact that, not only did I get the sense that Ren had been somewhat primed as a love interest, but Haru actually admits to this more and more towards the end of the season.
And throughout the entire show, multiple characters were also concerned for the closeness of Haru and Ren, but at some point just decided everything was SUPER COOL and overlooked it. Granted, I recognize that these two aren’t actually related by blood and that the way they see each other isn’t actually in the same familial sense that siblings do (at least that wasn’t how I viewed it).
I actually don’t mind age differences so long as everyone is legal, and as a queer writer and lover of anime, I wish that there were more shows tailored to my community. However, I had to consider what consent actually looked like in this relationship and I felt that the whole thing was just… Wrong… I wish I could have had more jokes to say about this anime, but really… I just felt too uncomfortable. And when it wasn’t the story line, it was the awkward placing and timing of every scene… Sometimes it felt like it just wanted to add drama just for drama’s sake. Other times it felt like it just wanted to fast forward time, but really that just made it hard to invest in any relationship or character… It was all just bad.
Eh, if you’re into the brother soft yaoi thing, I mean… I won’t judge. To your face at least. It was bad, but I can see that a lot of people like this sort of thing so… If it’s your kink, I guess that’s okay? I don’t know?
Me personally, I could have gone without. I actually just feel sort of slimy for watching it. I could have gone deeper into more details as to why I don’t like this show but I have a feeling that it would be an entire essay and wouldn’t be worth some ten episode anime that didn’t get much attention.
What kind of yaoi do you watch? Was it better than this? Tell me in the comment section below!