is a manga and anime series by CLAMP
that starts out as a Magical Girlfriend
comedy and transitions to a Contemplate Our Navels
debate on the relationship between humans and Persocoms, machines programmed to serve humans. It takes place many years after Kidou Tenshi Angelic Layer
, although the only canon immigrants
are of the "dead with an impact" variety.
The main character of Chobits
is Hideki Motosuwa, an Ordinary Cram School Student
who lives in a Japan where almost everyone has his or her own "Persocom" to do common tasks, ranging from household chores to surfing the Internet. Hideki would very much like his own Persocom, but there's no way he can afford one... unless he finds one lying in the trash. Like all Persocoms, this one looks just like a cute girlnote
except for the obligatory distinctive ears
. He starts her up, only to find that she has no memory or info on her hard drive, and can initially only say the word "Chi." Who is "Chi," and why was she left out in the trash in the first place? Could Chi possibly be a "Chobit," a rumored brand of robots capable of sapience and real emotion?
After several episodes of Hideki helping Chi to adjust to the real world with comic results
, the plot shifts in a more serious direction when it is implied that Chi may be developing feelings for Hideki. But is it actual feelings, or just programming? Hideki, despite his constant reminders to himself that she is only a machine, seems to have some degree of affection for her. He also learns that Persocoms can have unexpected effects on humans, hearing stories from his cram school teacher Takako Shimizu and the baker Hiroyasu Ueda. This happens despite having been warned by Minoru Kokubunji, a Persocom expert, "not to fall in love" with her. Meanwhile, Chi's Back Story
begins to gradually unravel... and Hideki finds that he may be falling in love with Chi...Dark Horse Comics
has re-released the series in an omnibus
version, with two volumes each containing half the series.
Compare with Kowarekake no Orgel
or Yuria 100 Shiki