First Impressions: Oreimo 2

The "."  at the end is how you you know it's season 2

Ore no Imouto ga Konna ni Kawaii Wake ga Nai.
Light Novel Adaptation by A-1 Pictures
Simulcast on Crunchyroll

Premise: Kirino returns from America and settles back into her old habits. Kyousuke has a new challenge on his hands though as he tries to sort out his relationship with Kuroneko.

She actually is cute if you pretend she never talks

Jel’s Verdict: My Little Sister Can’t Be Much Different

Oh Oreimo, why can’t I just hate you like I know I should? Especially after just watching the ballsier, less self indulgent Haganai corner the market on self aware Otaku comedy, you would think I’d be over it by now. It didn’t help that this was a pretty dull, by the numbers first episode back either. Essentially one big Kyousuke relationship status update, the scenes dutifully plodded along as Kirino got her groove back. For all the attention Oreimo gets for sparking the imouto craze I think some people have forgotten how relatively tame and inoffensive the show actually is.

So what black magic does Oreimo employ that makes it still worth watching? Is it the Romantic Tease with Kuroneko? I did find Kyousuke’s embarrassing inner monologue pretty amusing. Is it the parody aspect? The Dark Witch Meruru bit was funny, especially since the Glorio crew recently watched the latest Nanoha movie. Those elements do help smooth out Kirino’s obnoxiously coarse return to form, but I’m still not sure it’s an even trade. Whatever the reason, I’ll keep trying to find it as I carry on with our Oreimo coverage. I just hope I’ll keep enjoying it more than I should.

Swap Kuroneko in as the heroine and make Kirino the annoying imouto character - story fixed

Zigg’s Verdict: Reliably Repulsive

Oreimo pretty much settles straight back into the groove established during season 1, which is to say it’s occasionally amusing, smartly designed and interesting in concept, but dull, pandering and obnoxious in execution. This episode isn’t helped by the fact its mission is pretty much to establish the fact that the status quo has been restored. Thus, it’s pretty boring for long stretches as we see Kirino meet friends, Kirino go back to school, Kirino go to Akihabara… you get the idea.

As ever, Kirino remains the biggest issue about the show. She’s an intensely unlikable character, yet this world still turns for her almost unfailingly. For me though, her rude, arrogant attitude remains a major turn-off, and Kyousuke’s continued tolerance – let alone indulgence – of her remains utterly baffling. Honestly though, the big problem is content-wise there’s simply not a lot to hang onto here. I guess the Meruru parody is pretty good but it’s also a joke that’s largely played out at this point. A1 Pictures do make everything look lovely and the characters are still attractively designed, but it’s hardly a show you’re watching for the visuals.

My main issue with Oreimo remains the same as it ever was – this is a laser targeted show, one that tries to tick every box on the otaku culture checklist while ostensibly presenting itself as a satire on said culture. It feels far more like a product than a story or work of art. ‘Hey, girls can be nerds too!’ is an admirable message but the method of delivery here is so transparently shaped as some sort of  fawning power fantasy that I find it difficult to get on board. This is a well-executed example of a show I couldn’t care less about if I tried.

Alright, I'll admit the Meruru gag probably ran an little longer than necessary

Marlin’s Verdict: Gave us everything we didn’t need.

I feel like the audience could pretty easily tell that things went back to status quo without wasting an entire episode of Kyousuke just flopping around like a pathetic manservant. We don’t even get a good resolution of the Kuroneko dynamic which, let’s be honest here, is the only reason anyone should still be around. That and Crazyglasses, or whatever her real name is.

Really what made me the most angry was the assload of stuff Kirino is supposedly able to buy on a model budget (Editor’s note: they mention she just got the royalties from her light novel – Jel). Don’t these parents have any care for her future? No 401k plan or IRA? Not even a college fund? You’re just going to let your teenage daughter who obviously isn’t good with her money piddle it all away on something you don’t even like? Oh well, with all this setup nonsense out of the way I’m confident the ball will get rolling next episode and maybe we’ll get a return to form.

3 thoughts on “First Impressions: Oreimo 2

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