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EP. REVIEW: Domestic Girlfriend


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KuroOkami



Joined: 27 Jan 2019
Posts: 10
PostPosted: Sun Jan 27, 2019 1:43 pm Reply with quote
I agree with what others have said here that if you approach this story with a "normal" sense of morality, you should probably drop it now as it just continues and never gets better. But if you let that stop you, you will be missing out on a wonderfully told story that's just on the edge of being believable, while still being a completely provocative wish-fulfillment anime/manga that would never really happen.

I first came across Domestic Girlfriend this season when I watch the 1st episode, but something in the way it was told (I won't lie, along with the salaciousness of the content) really grabbed me. I couldn't wait to know more. I'm not a huge manga reader (usually more light novel series and extended sci-fi/fantasy series because I like immersing myself in that world and most of the one-shots and regular manga are just too short for me). But I was so drawn to this story that I spent the next two days reading everything. It's not the most complex story ever, in fact you can often see whats coming a mile away, but the way it's told still keeps you engaged and moves you. The more I read the more I loved it and wanted more.

I do have to agree with the review in one regards and that it the direction and delivery of the actual animation, and so I really hope that doesn't kill the anime. This work is so dialog heavy with a lot of wry and subtle humor, and I think the anime is struggling with that. diomedea, the studio that is putting out Domestic Girlfriend, usually does shows with more action and physical comedy and I can see the struggle. The timing, the soundtrack, the flow, it's all very sterile and formulated and doesn't really feel like it truly meshes with the character of the source material. I wish CoMix Wave or Kyoto Ani had gotten a hold of this. That would have been a real masterpiece of romantic drama.
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zrnzle500
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Joined: 04 Oct 2014
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 27, 2019 1:59 pm Reply with quote
TarsTarkas wrote:
A Mystery wrote:
I cannot really understand what the reviewer found so clunky about this episode. I can understand why the reviewer would dislike the bar character. Also, it's weird that we cannot like an animated show with unhealthy unlawful dynamics. It's not reality after all. In our fantasies, everything should be possible. If it just stays that way.


It's just today's society. If a show doesn't reflect the progressive ideaology and/or doesn't have a clear message in line with that ideaology, then it is bad. This is just the new normal today, sadly even amongst anime fans.

Still, who would have thought they would have made an anime of this show. Great for us fans though. So cheers to a glorious train wreck.


Honestly, what are you even talking about? He never said it was a bad show and he never said you can't like a show with unhealthy/unethical/unlawful dynamics (for example, the previously mentioned Scum's Wish, which he liked well enough to name the best anime of winter 2017) . That wasn't even his main issue with the episode, which was the direction and animation and how that affects the overall execution of the scenes in question. I can't speak more specifically about his concerns in those areas than is in the review, though I will agree with him that those areas weren't really the show's strong suit anyways. Furthermore, assuming his concerns with Hina's behavior are due to his political beliefs and not first and foremost his professional ethics (as Mr. Beckett is himself a teacher) seems more like saying something is bad because it doesn't reflect one's own ideology than anything he said in this review. I've had my disagreements with Mr. Beckett, sometimes vehement ones, but I think this criticism is deeply unfair to him and misrepresents what he actually said about the show.
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micah007



Joined: 25 Jan 2017
Posts: 51
PostPosted: Sun Jan 27, 2019 2:24 pm Reply with quote
A Mystery wrote:
Haha probably micah.
Though reality is usually weirder when it comes to unhealthy relationship dynamics. Far weirder than fiction. Heard a story a few weeks ago about a former friend in her twenties going out with a married 50+ year old man. That guy is her boss. She broke up with her own boyfriend, but apparently the affair started when she was still in a relationship too. Like, okay there is no underage thing going on, but other than that... what was she thinking? Why? So yeah she seemed to be a normal, intelligent person and I still think she is, minus the weird choices she now makes.


That's an unfortunate situation regarding your former friend, and I hope her current situation is better in some way.

Quote:
I think the truth is: we are all human and thus make stupid, stupid choices. Don't lie that you don't. Though I have to say, I took too little risk in my life to have messed up a lot, but that also means I have to face the consequences. As they say, sometimes taking a big risk can be rewarding.


I've definitely made mistakes in my life. Fortunately I can claim they aren't on the scale of anything we've seen so far in this anime and I hope to keep it that way. Might sound cliche, but you can always strive to do better. That is why I understand how it can be frustrating to see characters make choices that CLEARLY won't end well for multiple parties and from an individuals perspective will require alot of thinking to move past and reduce them as a person.
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Animegomaniac



Joined: 16 Feb 2012
Posts: 3267
PostPosted: Sun Jan 27, 2019 4:28 pm Reply with quote
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Since Hina is the adult engaging with a minor in this situation, the moment she decided to kiss Natsuo back is the moment she forfeited any moral high ground.


And not the moment previously when her "casual" drinking switched from a mass quantity of beer to drinking whiskey- with the bottle kept close to the glass, all in front of her student/ new brother/young male? Interesting.

The show is Tennessee Williams in anime form and I'm enjoying it immensely. Smart people and not so smart people... let's call her "Mina" to protect her identity... making stupid choices amid having sex, trying to have sex and regretting having sex. It's lacking the hot and humid weather to showcase skimpy clothing and sweaty bodies but Japanese bath scenes do in a pinch.

I've compared Hina to Blanche Dubois and until she shows some measure of self awareness and especially restraint, it's still holding true... though Blache's illicit affair was between a teacher and her student... yeah, like that kind of stuff, episode 3. You're going in the wrong direction in the right way.

I loved the part where Natsuo played out the cliche of Hina's situation in front of her with a "I swear I'll get a divorce soon, honey" and Hina nearly had a "That's so not me...wait, is that really my life?" moment of clarity only for her to pull rank as a teacher so she doesn't have to face reality - yet.

Quote:
it should be obvious that Natsuo is the last person in the world who should be butting into Hina's love life


You must have realized at some point that as a family member, regardless of how new or what he was previously or even still is, Natsuo should be butting in? "Well, the first real love of my life and now my new sister is being used by a married man? I'll just stay on the side here and watching her destroy her life. It's not my place to interact with immediate family members." Hina knows she's in a bad place and that's where her resentment to his butting in comes from- hopefully. If it really toward someone who she feels has no place in her life, a complete stranger... then she really should move out?

Hina's situation is perfectly counterpointed by her parents willing to get a divorce because they are thinking about other people. I was really impressed by their... think exact opposite of Hina... ah, selflessness.

Come to think on it, all of Hina is bit of a question. I understand getting Rui in a marriage but how messed up is Hina if a working adult who mostly stays home and drinks is part of the deal?


Last edited by Animegomaniac on Sun Jan 27, 2019 4:37 pm; edited 1 time in total
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KuroOkami



Joined: 27 Jan 2019
Posts: 10
PostPosted: Sun Jan 27, 2019 4:37 pm Reply with quote
Ok, I know I'm probably gonna get flack for this, but seeing as how Hina is my favorite and have read the rest of the source material so far, I'll try not to drop any spoilers, but Hina has her reasons for the attraction to both parties. Nor is her affair as black and white as you've seen so far. I still think Hina's boyfriend is a creep and she needs to make some better choices in her life.

I'll take care of you Hina.
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Fred Lougee



Joined: 01 Oct 2018
Posts: 75
PostPosted: Mon Jan 28, 2019 12:56 am Reply with quote
KuroOkami wrote:
I agree with what others have said here that if you approach this story with a "normal" sense of morality, you should probably drop it now as it just continues and never gets better. But if you let that stop you, you will be missing out on a wonderfully told story that's just on the edge of being believable, while still being a completely provocative wish-fulfillment anime/manga that would never really happen.


My main requisite for any dramatization, any story, is the characters. The closer they are to being fully fleshed-out, believable, the more likely I am to get into it. In the real world people make mistakes, sometimes horrific ones. Some people run from them, others face them head-on. DomeKano is about people making mistakes and deciding which course they are going to follow, stand or flee. This makes it different from Scum's Wish, which is merely a voyeur's-eye view of jilted teens having angst sex. I guess you could say that one is a train wreck with first responders, triage, intensive care, physical therapy, emotional support, and full medical coverage, and the other is a train wreck covered breaking on CNN with barely edited footage.


Quote:
I do have to agree with the review in one regards and that it the direction and delivery of the actual animation, and so I really hope that doesn't kill the anime. This work is so dialog heavy with a lot of wry and subtle humor, and I think the anime is struggling with that. diomedea, the studio that is putting out Domestic Girlfriend, usually does shows with more action and physical comedy and I can see the struggle. The timing, the soundtrack, the flow, it's all very sterile and formulated and doesn't really feel like it truly meshes with the character of the source material. I wish CoMix Wave or Kyoto Ani had gotten a hold of this. That would have been a real masterpiece of romantic drama.


YES! I think KyoAni would have done a much better job. There's a ton of subtle humor in the manga and a lot of stuff which gets carried by nuance, even things which translate well because they are almost universal...I think. Also situations. The scenes with the parents, both after Hina's encounter with her BF outside and when Rui and Natsuo return home seem unlikely in the anime. This is because the anime is failing to convey what the manga succeeds at, that the pair are so caught up in their new life together that they are almost completely oblivious to their respective childrens' plights. For Ma and Pa it really is all about them right now and diomedea is dropping the ball on showing this,
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Chaos Wings



Joined: 05 May 2015
Posts: 272
Location: Your guess is as good as mine?!
PostPosted: Mon Feb 04, 2019 4:49 am Reply with quote
Wait so Hina actually did break things off with Shuu, because when she told Natsuo and Rui that at the cemetery I was like "yeah you're lying your face off!".

Anyway I've been enjoying this show quite a lot, the strong Scums Wish vibes drew me in quite easily. Though it's definitely less depressing than that show, it still retains the same kind of entertainment value. Honestly though this is a popcorn series for me as opposed to SW, which had more emotional weight to it and felt more thought provoking as well. The most interesting aspect here is going to be watching how much of a multi-car pileup their lives become as things begin to unfold. Twisted Evil
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Animegomaniac



Joined: 16 Feb 2012
Posts: 3267
PostPosted: Mon Feb 04, 2019 10:20 am Reply with quote
I find this review fascinating because what struck me most about the Shuu situation was that while the affair lasted two years... I kept muttering "two years" to myself while I watched the rest of the episode... Shuu only or rather "only" managed to string Hina along with promises of getting a divorce for six months...
Six months...

Quote:
With Hina now single

[expletive deleted]!... but imagine it more as a spit take, I suppose.
She was always single, it's why she was upset and drinking alone, what's going on with this reviewer and his perspective on Hina..

Quote:
James is an English teacher


Well, [expletive deleted] me.
I don't know the manga but something's going to come up abut Shu's wife and we're supposed to feel bad about him..
Two years...
I don't care if she's in a coma, it's just ridiculous to feel sympathy for a man willing to string someone along for that long without telling the truth of his situation and the status of their relationship.

Quote:
they know nothing about how to properly meddle in adult affairs

If either Shuu or Hina were acting like adults, this would mean something.
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zensunni



Joined: 05 Mar 2010
Posts: 1258
PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 5:55 pm Reply with quote
One slight correction. I think that it is Mother's Day or something of that sort that they are buying a gift for and when Natsuo is visiting his mother's grave. Otherwise, it doesn't really make sense that he would visit her grave that day and his father would go some other time. If it were the anniversary of her death, they would go together, but if it were Mother's Day, it would be something Natsuo would do by himself now that he's old enough to go on his own.
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angelmcazares
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 11:26 am Reply with quote
Like James, I also thought and hope that Momo would become romantically interested on Rui. Episode 5 was still a strong entry, and I remain generally pleased with how Domestic Girlfriend is handling its characters.

And the stuff with the suppository was ridiculous. I am not sure how I would have felt if that had led to sex.
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ThatGuyWhoLikesThings



Joined: 04 Jul 2013
Posts: 572
PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 3:17 pm Reply with quote
lol, if you thought the suppository scene was handled tastefully here (about as well as it could've been), I'd love seeing your reaction to what the manga did.[/u]
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KuroOkami



Joined: 27 Jan 2019
Posts: 10
PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 4:17 pm Reply with quote
OK, what is it with fever suppositories. Is that the only way to cure a fever in Japan? I remember reading another manga parallel to DG that had a similar setup, but didn't go nearly as well (and no it was not a hentai manga).

With that out the way, I also genuinely appreciated how Natsuo dealt with seeing Momo's scars. I think in seeing them, he also realized that he was only thinking about himself in that situation and that he was really just using Momo to try and get over his feelings for his sisters. Seeing Momo's scars reminded Natsuo that Momo is a real person too with her own emotional problems and that to continue to use her then for sex would be just as bad as all the other shit that has been done to poor Momo.

This review also didn't mention the scene with the family thanking Natsuo for taking care of Rui and his dad's speech about being worried about combining siblings of such similar ages into the same house. Although it was quick, you can clearly see Natsuo and Hina having their own guilty moments and realizing their feelings for each other are still very inappropriate.

I don't really understand why the reviewer is so against the idea of Natsuo's character being the “sensitive writerly type”. This is hardly the first anime to portray its protagonist as an aspiring writer. Having read the manga, spoiler[being a writer is something Natsuo is actually passionate about and really honestly persues,] so I don't see the issue.
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青白



Joined: 30 May 2012
Posts: 183
PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2019 5:00 pm Reply with quote
I felt bad for Momo this entire episode for obvious reasons, but those sewed dolls made her character seem somehow even more real trying to imagine what that would look like in real life.
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Fred Lougee



Joined: 01 Oct 2018
Posts: 75
PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2019 3:19 pm Reply with quote
KuroOkami wrote:
This is hardly the first anime to portray its protagonist as an aspiring writer. Having read the manga, spoiler[being a writer is something Natsuo is actually passionate about and really honestly persues,] so I don't see the issue.


Have you watched "Tsuki ga Kirei"? It's another school romance wherein the male lead is an aspiring writer and it is excellent.
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KuroOkami



Joined: 27 Jan 2019
Posts: 10
PostPosted: Thu Feb 14, 2019 12:58 pm Reply with quote
Fred Lougee wrote:
Have you watched "Tsuki ga Kirei"? It's another school romance wherein the male lead is an aspiring writer and it is excellent.


Yes Fred, I have, and it is quite good as well.
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