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Anime: Potemayo
Bow to my cuteness

Premise: I have no idea. It's... it's... I don't know what it is.

Potemayo is a Twelve Episode Anime, based on a Yonkoma manga, that takes the Widget Series approach to the ISO-standard anime high school love triangle: Girl meets boy, girl falls for boy, boy doesn't notice girl, boy finds titular moe-blob in fridge, boy names moe-blob after foodstuff, moe-blob loves boy at first sight, boy treats it as pet and adopts it, moe-blob's antics give girl an 'in' with boy, girl has to build on this and contend with jealous moe-blob for boy's affections - boy doesn't notice. Then the first half of the first episode ends.

The second half introduces a B-plot in the form of a second moe-blob, Guchuko. A shy, tsundere moe-blob which cuts its way out of the fridge with a scythe and Beam Spams anything she doesn't like the look of from snakes on the sides of her head. She leaves presents of scorched, bleeding animal carcasses for the girl who feeds her snacks.

The second episode is about how one of those two guys wants to know what Potemayo feels like. He and the protagonist end up in cheerleader outfits as a result of his efforts. The third episode has Potemayo puking over one of the girls in class... getting the idea?

All this is woven into the framework for a gently humorous Slice of Life series. Most of the humour ensues from the interactions between the 'normal' characters and the childlike moe-blobs. The rest, well... let's just say that you can expect to say, "...what the f***?" at least once an episode, besides the toilet humour.

Did I mention it was unspeakably cute?

This series provides examples of:

  • A Boy and His X - A Boy and His Moe-blob.
    • Followed closely by A Girl and Her Wild Moe-blob.
  • Aloof Big Brother - Yasumi. Technically he's the younger brother, but he's certainly got the height.
  • Amazingly Embarrassing Parents
  • Amusing Injuries
  • Anime Hair - Looks like they used Photoshop gradient to colour their hair.
  • Apathy Killed the Cat - Lampshaded when Those Two Guys wonder how a creature like Potemayo could even exist. Their questions, and those of the class, are then forgotten in the face of her sheer cuteness.
    • Although discussion about what sort of creature she is does happen a few times. Sunao is wondering about it in the second episode, and his dad suggests in one episode that it's mating season for her, leading to Sunao thinking she's a teenage girl.
  • Attention Deficit... Ooh, Shiny!
  • Badass Adorable - You don't want to mess with Guchuko, even if she does look like a stuffed toy.
  • Balloon Belly
  • Beam Spam - For the sake of all that is good and holy, do NOT anger Guchuko. Or confine her. Or stand too close to her. You know what, just stay the heck away from her.
  • Big Eater
  • Big Fancy House - Nene's, complete with a hot spring large enough for the entire class.
  • Blind Without 'Em
  • Boisterous Bruiser - Sunao's father. He's capable of irritating Sunao just by being there. (Sunao's got an extremely good reason for his irritation.)
  • Brain Bleach: The Festival Episode has a cheerleader sequence made of men in frilly panties. Yes, your eyes will burn!
  • Buttmonkey - "Mutan..."
  • Can Not Spit It Out - Mikan's crush is such that even Sunao's hand on hers can make her faint. Poor Mikan.
  • Chocolate of Romance: A girl gives chocolate to Nene's friend Kyo on Valentine's Day.
  • Cicadian Rhythm - Guchuko finds her own way of dealing with the anime classic.
  • Cranial Eruption - Used quite a bit, mostly on Sunao's father.
  • Cultural Cross-Reference
  • Cute Critters Act Childlike - The moe-blobs, particularly Potemayo.
  • Cute Mute - "Honi, honi, honi, honi...". This, interestingly, can make her very frustrated; when she's actively trying to communicate, people either think she's just making cute noises or completely misinterpret her.
  • The Ditz - Mikan. Comes close to Love Freak a couple of times.
  • Even the Girls Want Her - Kyou crossdresses as a butler in the festival cafe and two girls nervously ask if they can take a picture.
  • Eye Catch - Every time someone is added to the cast, the screen fills a little more.
  • Fantastic Comedy
  • Hammerspace - Guchuko's pouch/pocket/whateverthehellitis can hold a lot of stuff.
  • Head Pet - Potemayo, who also has a little bird on her head, making it a recursive head pet.
  • Here We Go Again - The anime proper ends with Sunao and Potemayo "evaluating" a new, rabbity moeblob, which came out of the trash can from Potemayo's seed.
  • Honorifics - Sunao gets called -temee by Yasumi.
  • Huge Schoolgirl - Kyou, who's also more 'developed' than the other girls.
  • I Do Not Speak Nonverbal - Mikan, who can't sense hostility from Potemayo until it's too late.
    • The final episode has Kyou and her parents trying to figure out what Guchiko's trying to 'say'.
  • It Came from the Fridge - Potemayo's and Guchuko's origin; "I found her in my fridge" is all the explanation we and the cast are given. That boy really needs to clean out his refrigerator.
  • JC Staff
  • Jerkass - Nene isn't just a turquoise-haired, squeaky-voiced jerkass, she's THE turquoise-haired, squeaky-voiced jerkass.
  • Kawaisa - Calling this series "Cute" is like saying Everest is tall.
  • Line-of-Sight Name - Potato + Mayonnaise (in the same vein as all those Portmanteau Series Nicknames out there), the prime flavorings in what Sunao happened to be eating at one time, lends Potemayo her name.
  • Love Bubbles / Bishie Sparkle - Mikan is extremely prone to these in her daydreams.
  • Love Triangle - How often have we seen the ol' "boy / girl / blob" trifecta, eh? Becomes a Love Dodecahedron as the series progresses.
  • Megaton Punch
  • Missing Mom - Because she was an Ill Girl.
  • Mood Whiplash - The last one-and-a-half episodes swap some comedy out for "serious" backstory/plot.
  • Narrator: Kikuko Inoue.
  • Nosebleed - To such an extreme with Mikan that she winds up going to the hospital.
  • Omake / OVA - The DVDs contain 6 specials.
  • Parental Abandonment
  • Potty Failure: Potemayo's prone to these.
  • Puni Plush
  • Punny Name - Natsu Yasumi (aka "Summer Vacation")
  • Red String of Fate - Mikan is shown with one in the title sequence as the Anime Theme Song appropriately says, "Even though it's long / I can't figure out how to tie it".
  • Refuge in Audacity - The gags are far more adult than you'd expect, given the animation style. Like Yasumi spending time in the bathroom after accidentally touching his sister's breast. Yeah, they went there.
  • Rich Bitch: Nene Kasugano, of course.
  • Ridiculously Cute Critter - Potemayo and Guchiko, of course. But what kind of bird is Tori?
  • Rule of Cute: What is Potemayo? Who cares, she's cute!
  • Selective Obliviousness - Sunao. When his love interest Mikan is being attacked by Potemayo, he interprets her flailing as a request for his bread.
  • Single Minded Triplets - Nene's brothers, who double as her Instant Fan Club.
  • Shout-Out - To Western movies like Brokeback Mountain, Some Like It Hot, and The Lion King.
  • "Silly Me" Gesture - Mikan does this in the opening credits.
  • Subverted Kids Show - Looks like it should be subtitled, "The Charming Adventures of Pote-chan and Friends"; there's even a children's television-style narrator. Theeen you notice the frequency of the toilet humour/Ho Yay gags...
    • Guchuko's tendency to blast whatever bothers her.
  • The Stoic - Sunao must be the most chilled anime protagonist yet.
    • There's also Potemayo's nightmare in episode four.
  • Theme Naming - A "mikan" is a type of orange and Mikan has orange hair of the exact same shade.
  • Those Two Guys - Along with Those Three Girls.
  • Triang Relations - variation 5, comprising Kaoru, Mudou, and Potemayo. Yes, a boy has a crush on a boy who has a crush on a moe-blob. Who also has a crush on Sunao...
  • Three Shorts - "Two shorts" format, actually.
  • Toilet Humor: At one point in the first episode, a bird poops on Potemayo's head, and yes, there is a loud farting noise as this happens.
  • Wave Motion Gun: Guchuko's "horns" are basically this.
  • Wholesome Crossdresser - episode 7. Three words: Hairy Festival Cheerleaders.
    • A later episode introduces what appears to be a very young boy wearing a skirt after they'd been seen wearing trousers. The characters react with alarm...
    • Viewer Gender Confusion - ...but it's an intentional use of this trope; the skirt-wearer turns out to have been a young girl all along. Understandable, due to her presumably single-figure age and non-girly behaviour.
      • They're in fifth grade, IIRC, which would make them around twelve, no?
    • And Sunao nonchalantly wears a cheerleader's outfit whilst his uniform is drying in one episode.
    • Don't forget the magnificent 6th DVD special. The class decides to do a cafe for the school festival. The first half is your average class cafe with the girls serving everyone, but when afternoon rolls around it switches to the boys crossdressing. Cue Sunao waltzing in and making everyone feel much less uncomfortable.
      • The girls were technically crossdressing as well.
  • Widget Series - The weirdness level hovers at somewhere between 0.4 and 0.6 Excel Sagas.
  • Yonkoma - Format of the manga.

Nodame CantabileAnime of the 2000sSaint October

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