First Look: Wolf Girl and Black Prince

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Alternative title: Ookami Shoujo to Kuro Ouji
Manga Adaptation by TYO Animations
Streaming on Crunchyroll

Premise

Erika is a starting freshman. She’s a pathological liar with a very vain concept of how friendship works. In order to get in good with some gaaru girls that are her neighbors, she pretends to have a boyfriend. After being pressed, she decides to take the picture of some rando named Kyoya to pretend he’s the genuine article. There’s only one problem: He goes to her school. In order for him to keep up airs, he wants to make her life an embarrassing mess.

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Marlin’s verdict: Begs For Something More

It might just be because of the volumes of worse shows I’d watched in the same day, but I came out of this first episode with a way better opinion than I thought I would. The beginning is definitely a bit of a stinker. I suppose to get to the root of the problem, there’s no real reason to like either of these main characters. As said, Erika is a huge liar, but Kyoya is a huge douchebag. Erika is a pervert and just generally unscrupulous by just taking his picture and running, but Kyoya is equally as horrible for exploiting her lies for his own twisted wants. Still, I found myself at least finding certain parts of it funny in a weird way. At the very least, it fulfills my sparkles quota. Now that Nozaki-kun is over I guess I need to get ’em from somewhere.

If I could bet on it, I imagine Kyoya wants to treat her like a dog because he’s been betrayed by women in the past, and wants one he can trust implicitly. It’s super messed up but that’s the only way I can see this making much sense without him just being a total douchebag. Not that that would make things better, but it would at least explain his behavior. They even want to make us think “oh maybe he’s not so horrible after all” in the final act of this episode, but it’s not fooling anyone. I’m still not sure what exactly you could do to improve Erika’s character. She’s totally reprehensible from the very start, and I’m not going to like her just because she’s the main character. The only way she could get better is if she learns to stop using lies to cover for her insecurities. The only problem is her lying is the crux of the entire show, so I’m not sure how that can be done effectively while maintaining the premise.

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Jel’s verdict: On a Short Leash

I was bored to death for most of this episode as it went through the motions of setting up what I’ll call “Shoujo Manga Plot C: Pretend Boyfriend”. My attention was finally grabbed by the girls’ surprisingly open discussion about sex and the eventual implication of some kind of S&M thing going on with the main couple. I am not sure how much that improves the series, but it least gave my brain something to chew on. I think the best we could hope for would be a similar situation to the severely under appreciated Mysterious Girlfriend X: two lonely people exploring their inner desires in a strange but healthy way. Of course that series also had a cool retro art style and fascinatingly creepy vibe to draw from, while Wolf Girl and Black Prince seems to be too enslaved to its roots to evolve into anything special. Count me out on this one, but let me give a quick shoutout to the great OP song. I’m a total sucker for bubblegum pop rock, so thumbs up on that.

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