Reviews: B Gata H Kei

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Curious Self-Exploration
This series features some classic elements of its story type, in that way it's quite common. It's a high school romantic comedy story - filled with school festivals, class trips, classrooms, peer pressure, teenage emotions, hormones, and activities, future pressure and the like.

The story starts with Yamada and Kosuda, both virgins who have never had a relationship or even really touched the other sex. I enjoy how the progression deals with issues that affect real couples.

While the story ends happily, it's a rocky road that deals with annoying rivals, misunderstandings, sexual performance issues, love and developmental issues (especially for Yamada), but it overcomes those maturely. I also love how those hiccups don't seem forced for the sake of story or drama, but seem natural.

At the end of the series, Takashita often remarks many times on how over the course of the three years of high school that Yamada has matured intensely. The issues become increasingly dealt with in mature fashion as well.

Some have described this series very feminist because Yamada is said to be sexual and know what she wants. While the portrayal of female sexuality overall is good, Yamada, in fact, often doesn't know what she wants. Her emotions are conflicted, especially when actually becoming physically intimate with Kosuda.

In the beginning, we're set with a contrast of a popular and very pretty Yamada and the average, boring Kosuda. Through the series, both Yamada and Kosuda grow. Because of each other, they both become more realistic and mature together. While initially just a draw of "pretty, popular girl meets and falls for average, kind boy", over the series Yamada becomes in some ways more average while Kosuda becomes unique and manly.

Overall, I enjoyed the series decently. I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys the romance and/or high school genres of manga/anime. While not the best story in complexity, its simplicity at times is delightfully deep.
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Originally Average
I'll say this for B Gata H Kei's premise: it's… unique.

Alright that may not strictly be true. How about this: it's a unique view on an incredibly common premise. If you want to know why, take a look at the page quote. Go on, I'll wait.

See? While the plot itself was nothing special, I actually thought that it was pretty well executed. Like I said above, it wasn't really the action or events that made it interesting, but the way in which they were shown. Accidental Pervert is stock comedy for any romance anime. When it's intentional on the girl's behalf though… that makes it interesting.

Of course to balance this frighteningly original perspective, the male protagonist had to be a complete and total idiot. Usually in these shows, my biggest gripe is with how the female cast are shown. This time, I wanted to punch Takashi Kosuda in the face. Repeatedly. Needless to say, he got No Sympathy from me. Ever.

On to animation. It was decent and consistent. That's about the best you can say about anime animation really; you can't really say too much about it at all, unless it's truly terrible. Okay then, how about voice acting? Pretty much the same. One might even say that it was average. No complaints there then.

With regards to the conclusion. It was a typical "happy ending". The main plot was brought to a close quite nicely and the threads that were left hanging were minor characters which were really only there as foils to the protagonists. Overall, a pretty standard finale, not entirely concluded per se but very clear on where things are going to go from here and how the characters will get there.

Okay... so the plot is fairly common save for an original perspective, the animation is decent, the voice acting is average and overall there are only a few minor complaints. Would I recommend it? For those who like this genre: go for it. Chances are you'll enjoy it. For those who don't like the genre: you won't get much out of this show as it's only noteworthy feature is its unique way of retelling a story we've all heard a thousand times, and sometimes that just isn't enough. Then again, sometimes it is. Regardless, this show is far better than it sounds on paper, but make no mistake, it is no less weird.

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