The Earth has just thwarted one of those pesky alien invasions, thanks to the actions of the superpowered combat android Mahoro. As a reward, she is given the freedom to live the rest of her operational life (just over a year) however she chooses. Mahoro chooses to spend her days serving Suguru Misato, as a maid.In the second season, Mahoromatic: Something More Beautiful, Mahoro is joined by her "little sister" who is a completely Terran Robot Girl Maid (and, initially, a failure). There are even the makings of a small harem with the male lead's schoolmates (though the feel is more of a close group of friends or True Companions rather than a true harem).At its core, Mahoromatic is a comedy with strong dramatic (even tragic) elements. As a comedy, it offers several laugh-out-loud moments. In fact, its signature Catch Phrase — "Dirty thoughts are bad!" — shows up in many variations on the net and in other anime. The ending in the anime version is much darker than in the manga. You have been warned.
Above the Influence: Suguru. He never takes advantage of Mahoro, and always brushes off Shijiko-sensei's advances, and treats his female classmates with respect, much to all of their chagrin at times.
And I Must Scream: One of the Vesper scientists is amazed at the amount of damage Minawa's body has sustained through various implementations of robotic enhancements to her. He comments that her body should be constantly screaming in pain due to all the stuff put into her. But despite that, Minawa never seems to complain about those things.
Benevolent Alien Invasion: The Saint, somewhat. In episode 11 of Season 1, one of the Saint members gives a little backstory on how the members of Saint went throughout the galaxy looking for new species to contact, but were quite surprised at not finding any kind of life anywhere. And then when they find Earth, the first response humans have is of violence towards them, to the point where they end up having to make some combat androids to counter the human's hostilities.
BFG: Mahoro's gun in episode 11, which is powered via the electric grid, and causes a city-wide blackout when she powers it up.
Big Breasts, Big Deal: Rin, the tall girl with long hair, of Suguru's trio female classmates, says that having big boobs is actually quite problematic for her due to backaches and the excessive attention she receives from guys. Chizuko and Miyuki, the other two girls, beg to differ, and only wish they had "her problems."
Big Damn Heroes: Suguru does one the final episode of Season 1, which ends up saving Mahoro.
Both Slash and Ryuga do one to rescue Suguru and Mahoro in Season 2.
The Blank: The ghost boy when he first appears in episode 5, followed very shortly by a very creepy Slasher Smile. The scary expression causes all of the humans to faint from the shock of seeing that.
Blatant Lies: Mahoro does this when she realizes Suguru doesn't seem comfortable with her being too honest when his teacher asks her personal questions. His friends seem to buy her story, but the Shikijo-sensei still seems suspicious of it.
Blessed with Suck: Minawa. In episode 7 of Season 2, she knocks the flowers from several people who were attacking her in the town mock battle, simply by tripping accidentally...
Breaking the Fourth Wall: In the first OVA, after Mahoro spies on Suguru and his male friends at the end in one of her PaperThinDisguises, she starts to follow them, then stops, runs towards the camera, waves at it, then runs back to chase after them.
Breast Expansion: While not quite board flat herself, Mahoro is fairly insecure about her relatively small bust. She's, therefore, understandably upset in the dream sequence episode where her mail-order breast enhancement device works on Shikijo, and even the male Suguru (and also Minawa in the anime), but not on her.
Two of Suguru's female classmates and Mohoro also think this way. Rin, who actually had a nice chest often complains about unwanted male (and female) attention as well as back aches. Don't expect anyone to believe her.
What look like very simple dance steps are almost certainly a case of No Budget verging on Special Effects Failure. Remember the episode where Mahoro spends days practicing to be able to lead the Obon dance, and how dumb it seemed that anyone would have to repeatedly practice waving their hands from to the left of their shoulders to the right of their waist? If you've ever watched the real thing, you'll understand why it could take weeks of practice. The Bon Odori is an intricately choreographed dance, and the handwaving was just a low-budget shorthand for it. It's not hard to imagine that with a budget, the Mahoro Mambo would have rivaled Hare Hare Yukai.
Dirty Old Man: Suguru's grandfather, who upon visiting him is quite jealous that he's living with, or is being chased by, so many different women.
Distant Finale: The last episode of Season 2 jumps ahead 20 years, and shows us what's happened since the previous episode. Important things:
Since the leadership of Management was destroyed by Slash and Suguru's grandfather, the leader of Vesper, humanity and Saint formed a peace treaty, and have since built colonies in outer space. The episode takes place in a space colony which appears to be orbiting Jupiter.
Suguru is now a Heart Broken Bad Ass, who's sole purpose in life is to kill combat androids. He's kept Mahoro's brooch as a reminder of her, and why he hates combat droids.
Matthew, who was referred to by characters affiliated with Saint, turns out to have been part of Mahoro, and before they take off again to search for new places, decides to leave one aspect of her's behind, that of Mahoro, who seems to be reincarnated nearby Suguru.
The ending can be interpreted in two ways, which is up to the individual viewer:
For a more jaded Bitter Sweet Ending or Downer Ending version, Suguru is mortally wounded, and gets to see Mahoro one last time before he finally kicks the bucket. The anime does seem to imply this, having Suguru mention not being able to see a doctor in time as well as his natural organs getting hit.
For a more Earn Your Happy Ending version, Suguru is still wounded, but may likely survive it, given the likely advances in technology from Saint, and gets reunited with Mahoro, who probably no longer has any time restrictions left on her. They go back to Japan and reunite with their high school friends, and Minawa is implied to be there as well.
Distracted by the Sexy: Suguru's two male friends in episode 7 of Season 2. They both get jealous when the three female classmates cheer Suguru on, so decide to take him out first. Then a strong wind blows, revealing the girl's panties, and his two guy friends suddenly stop to gawk, giving Suguru time to knock out the flowers on their heads.
Dojikko: Minawa, although her klutziness may be due to repeated bone alteration experiments at the hands of Management. It's more than a little disturbing to see the X-ray results of her limbs near the end of the second season, and one character's comments that she should be in constant, extreme pain.
Played for Laughs in episode 7 of Season 2, when during the town mock battle two of the citizens attacks Minawa, trying to knock the flower out of head. She trips, and somehow manages to knock both of the attacker's flowers out, and apologizes. Then proceeds to somehow knock out some more flowers without really trying. One of the townsfolk even wonders if it's a drunken style fighting, then settles on "Apology Fu".
Double Standard: Abuse—Female on Male: Happens more so in Season 2. Both Ryuga and Slash laugh pretty hysterically at Mahoro in episode 2 after the latter trips and falls in her outfit in the previous scene. She proceeds to smack both of them repeatedly, especially after Ryuga claims he can see her underwear.
Enemy Mine: In episode 7 of Season 2, after Suguru's three female classmates cheer him on during the battle, both of his guy friends, who were fighting against each other, suddenly decide to team up to take Suguru out first.
Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: The Management scientist who tried to capture Mahoro keeps wondering why the androids he's given a "heart" to keeps betraying him.
Expressive Hair: Mahoro's hair thingies perk up when she's happy, or droop when she's tired or sad, and even a bit at times.
Eye Catch: A little scene is shown with Mahoro cleaning up, followed by the title.
Failure Knight: The reason Mahoro decided to remove her armaments and work for (and move in with) Suguru in the first place.
Gainax Ending: On that note, take a wild guess as to who made the anime.
They were twisting the ending of manga, where Mahoro does come back and all's well that ends well.
To explain this: In the manga, several years have passed, and Suguru now works for Saint. His friends still live around him, and they notice the emotional barrier he has put up despite his apparent friendliness, as a result of the trauma of having Mahoro self-destruct in front of him. Unbeknownst to him, Mahoro was reincarnated as a baby immediately after her death, raised by Ryuga, and remembered her past life after reaching her teens. She meets Suguru in the garden of his house.
In the anime:
there is some debate as to whether or not Mahoro comes back in the flesh or not. It is mentioned that Saint is releasing "a memory" back to Suguru before moving on, and in the haunted school episode it's implied that unfulfilled purposes can create ghosts. Mahoro may have come back as such a ghost, and Suguru died in the epilogue episode, making the haunted school episode an example of Foreshadowing.
It could be implied that Suguru is just drunk and possibly crazy. He's half-psychotic as it is. He became a renegade, and threw away all connections to humanity except Gils - who literally stabs him in the back with his own sword for the bounty on his head. Suguru yanks the sword out, decapitates Gils, and loses it because... this reveals that Gils is an android. (He really hates androids now, and spent the last twenty years obsessed with killing them all.)
With Saint moving on into the void once again, Matthew decided to leave behind the memories gained as "Mahoro" in a new physical body. Still undecided on Suguru's fate, though.
Whether or not Mahoro really came back, Gainax went out of their way to imply that Suguru's wound was mortal (including some heavy foreshadowing from Shikijo). Now there's a hell of an ending - "Yay! Mahoro's back, possibly with an immortal body! Just in time to... watch Suguru die."
Gainaxing: In abundance. This is made by Gainax after all.
Go Through Me: Suguru does this to protect Mahoro from Ryuga in the final episode of Season 1. Interestingly enough, Ryuga does just that, smacking Suguru and knocking him out of the way, which sets off Mahoro's Berserk Button.
Great Off Screen War: One is implied to have happened prior to the start of the series, although we only get glimpses of it and what Mahoro did in it. Further invoked by Management who's apparently hidden the fighting with the aliens largely offscreen, and seemingly hidden away from the general public. In Season 2 they seem to control a lot of influence and power, and is able to assassinate the US President when he attempted to go public with information on Management.
Green-Eyed Monster: Suguru's entire class is insanely jealous of the fact that he's living with what seems like a young maid around their age. To the point where they all chase after him after school one day, but thanks to his speed and endurance, he outruns every one of his classmates.
Haunted House: Well, it's actually their school, but one of the boys mentions that a girl died after falling down from the rooftop, and later mentions a boy suffering a fatal heart attack after getting tossed into the pool. The girls play a practical joke on the boys with the girl curse, but then it turns out that said girl really exists. As far as the pool, when a hand grasps Suguru's leg, the kids freak out, only to find out that it was Shikiro-sensei taking a midnight swim due to it being too hot to sleep. Then they also find the boy ghost, and all of them minus Mahoro faints from the sheer terror.
Head Pet: Suguru's dog is often sitting on Slash's head.
Heroic Sacrifice: Mahoro did a Suicide Attack on Feldrance who wanted to kill Suguru. Suguru's Grandfather smuggled Slash in the party to wipe out The Management's leadership, it was shown at the that he didn't survive too.
Also played straight when in episode 11 a member of Saint mentions that when they finally found life in the galaxy (Earth), the only thing said life forms were interested in was violence and war towards them.
Imagine Spot: Several characters display these. In episode 2, Suguru's entire class does this when they first meet Mahoro, who essentially says her body and soul belongs to Suguru. They all immediately imagine all the naughty things those two must be doing at home.
Instant Bandages: Minawa usually sports these. Happens to the other characters once in a while too.
Large Ham: Chizuko goes through this anytime she tastes something good. Due to this, Mahoro initially thought Chizuko found her food terrible, until her friends tell the maid that the girl tends to do this as a compliment.
Lightning Glare: Shijiko-sensei and Mahoro do this to each other occasionally.
Locked Out of the Loop: Suguru is kept unaware of his father's real job until late in the anime. However, by then he's more or less come to accept what happened, and doesn't blame Mahoro for what she had to do.
Magical Girlfriend: While Mahoro is technically an android, for all intents and purposes, she's this.
Male Gaze: Quite often. Hilariously, when getting the debriefing at Vesper in episode 5 regarding the crab attack, the woman giving the speech mentions that it seemed to attack females obscenely. Cue all the men at the briefing suddenly leaning in for a closer look at the pictures, until the woman makes an annoyed grunting noise.
Mood Whiplash: While much of the series seems focused on an ordinary life, the show tends to remind us constantly about Mahoro's past life as a combat android, which clashes a lot with the simpler stuff, such as her fights with Shijiko-sensei over Suguru.
Gets worse in Season 2 once Management starts taking a more active role in the story. They make Ryuga's motives and fights with Mahoro in Season 1 look tame by comparison.
Mundane Made Awesome: Chizuko's descriptions of Mahoro's cooking in general fit this, but the ultimate example is in season two, episode 6: her exposition about Mahoro's curry lasts a good minute and a half!
Mundane Utility: MAHORO uses her powers to cook, clean and search for ecchi (to trash it).
No Plans, No Prototype, No Backup: Arguably Mahoro. You'd think a company that created such an effective fighting tool would mass produce them, or at the very least have the blueprints and data handy to create more, seeing how effective the prototype is.
Oh Crap: Suguro has this thought when he thinks about Mahoro finding his dirty magazines while cleaning his room. He rushes home and finds out that his room is spotless now, and his magazines are laid neatly on top of each other on his desk. Cue Mahoro lecturing him on naughty magazines.
Mahoro herself has this look at the end of episode 11 when her shot didn't kill Ryuga as she had hoped it would.
Paper-Thin Disguise: Mahoro goes to Suguru's school in one episode disguised in a girl's uniform to get info on Ryuga, and Suguru immediately recognizes her before she pretends to be someone else and runs away. In one episode of Season 2 she also wears various disguises, which aren't very effective due to the fact that her face can be seen in said costumes/disguises, such as a light pole.
She goes to the school again as a student again in Season 2. Absolutely none of the main students nor Shijiko-sensei are fooled by it, and they even wonder why she's there. In the same episode, Suguru's classmates also wear various disguises pretending to be someone else, but Mahoro, Suguru, and Minawa aren't fooled either.
Scare Dare: In episode 5, the boys go to the school at night to do some research.
Serious Business: In the first OVA, Mahoro gathers all of the main female cast in order to find and search for naughty magazines the boys may have. Suguru at least, goes to incredibly great lengths (and forcing Slash to be his getaway mount, with hilarious results), to hide the magazines from Mahoro, who in this episode is way too determined to take them away. Slash also informs Suguru that Mahoro picked that habit up from Suguru's father, who himself hid a lot of magazines as well.
Shoot the Hostage: Mahoro was forced to do this with Suguru's father in the background story.
Shout Out: Slash, to Cyborg009, with his "acceleration device".
Also, in one of the episodes Mahoro wears different dresses, two of which look like dresses that Minmei from Macross wore on occasion. You can see where the animators obviously got some of their mecha influences from.
Take a Third Option: During Valentines, all of the main girls except Minawa give Suguru chocolate. They then all sit across from him, expecting him to choose which girl's chocolate to eat first (and by extension, which girl he likes the most). His attempt to sneak away is caught by Shijiko, along with Mahoro blocking the exit. Since he doesn't seem like he wants to choose one specific girl, he decides to just eat all of them really quickly in such a way that none of them can figure out whose chocolate he ate first.
First, by Suguru's grandfather and Slash, who takes out the leadership of Management, partly out of vengeance for Management blaming Vesper for assassinating the US President, and partly because he doesn't believe in their ideals of advancing humanity's technology at the expense of lots of them dying in the process. Slash appears to have survived, but Suguru's grandfather definitely dies.
Later, Mahoro sacrifices herself by holding onto Feldrance, then showing him how to properly use the energy from the energy blade his bosses stole from Vesper, and blows herself up along with him.
Theme Tune Cameo: Mahoro hums part of the opening theme while walking home in one episode.
The Reveal: That voice that Vesper personnel talks to but is never seen? It turns out to be Suguru's grandfather, whom Mahoro immediately recognizes when he visits his grandson in one episode. Prior to this not much was revealed about him other than he was in charge of Vesper.
Unfinished Business: In episode 5, the reason for the two ghosts sticking around. The girl was waiting for a boy, and the boy was stuck at the pool due to dying there. Mahoro helps them out by snagging him and bringing him towards the ghost girl.
Whole Episode Flashback: Episode 10 reveals more about Mahoro's life of fighting the Saint and her friendship with Suguru's father.
Yaoi Fangirl: Subverted: when Suguru starts asking around about his teacher, Ryuga, both his friends and Shikijo suspect an onset of yaoi, and are respectively squicked and devastated.
You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Invoked by both the Management scientist who tries to capture Mahoro, which is then immediately followed by his android assistant Feldrance does it on him, stating he's still got a mission to complete to return the data on Mahoro to another Management scientist, before shooting the first scientist and taking the escape pod with only one seat available.
Zettai Ryouiki: Mahoro, Minawa and two of Suguru's friends in the OVA when everyone dons a Meido outfit.
Zigzag Paper Tassel: The title page illustration for chapter 8 showed Mahoro dressed up as a miko, holding an ōnusa in one hand and exorcism sutras in the other. (This chapter is about searching for ghosts at school.)