The Nihon Review - Anime Reviews & Editorials

Onii-chan Dakedo Ai Sae Areba Kankeinai yo ne!

Title: Onii-chan Dakedo Ai Sae Areba Kankeinai yo ne!
Genre: Comedy/Romance
Company: Silver Link
Format: 12 episodes
Dates: 5 Oct 2012 – 21 Dec 2012

Synopsis: Himenokouji Akiko is deeply enamored of her older brother, whom she has not met since they were little. Finally, after living apart for six years, Akito reunites with his little sister and moves into her dormitory. Now, Akiko has to compete with the other girls for her brother’s affection. How will Akiko fulfill her incestuous lust?

The Highlights
Writing: Predictable and banal.
Composition: Bountiful fanservice to go with unfunny jokes.
Production quality: Good.

Shortly after learning how to read, we have been bombarded with the cliché “don’t judge a book by its cover.” Onii-chan Dakedo Ai Sae Areba Kankeinai yo ne! is proof that there is wisdom in that trite saying. Our male lead, Himenokouji Akito, moves in with his little sister, Akiko, in a high school dormitory occupied by a host of girls who are miraculously attracted to him. This anime that has nowhere to go with its premise and proceeds to do just that. OniiAi is a complete mess of predictable characterization, pointless filler, and terrible dialogue that is smutty to the core and devoid of even a shred of sensibility or ethos.

OniiAi is nominally a harem comedy show, but the show is dreadfully lacking in humor because it is populated with bland, poorly-developed characters. Akito acts predictably; he puts up with all the girls while rejecting their advances. He has essentially friend-zoned the entire cast. Akito supposedly serves as a contrast to the wild antics of the girls, but instead he comes off as an ideologue with no personality. OniiAi would have found more humor sliding further into the absurd, rather than stifling it with the male lead. The girls are haphazard assemblies of harem archetypes that somehow bring out the most annoying traits of each. Above all, I found Ginbei to be completely devoid of personality, lacking even a tangible gimmick to set her character apart.

Early in the first episode, OniiAi reveals its uncouth nature. The girls are perverse, the ecchi fanservice is abundant, and the opening animation is as bold and crass as they come. I don’t believe that fanservice is inherently bad, but the show lacks the structure to involve fanservice to bring narrative into focus. Because the dialogue is so weak, and the characters are so unbelievable, the audience may as well be watching an ecchi slideshow. The fanservice distracts the viewers from the little plot there is.

The anime manages to do a few things well. A set piece actually works on occasion, so usually one or two moments in an episode are reasonably funny. The character designs look cute, and I found the thick lines and color contrast pleasing to the eye. Being a show from Silver Link, the production quality is very good. The cartoonish, colorful style gives the show an appropriately fun and light-hearted mood.

OniiAi is an energized but derivative harem anime. While the show is more aggressively raunchy than its contemporaries, it doesn’t add any actual substance or originality to the very tired genre. You can put lipstick on a pig, but it’s still a pig.

The Rating: 3

Reviewed by: kevo

Top of page