Series Review

Anime Hajime Review: Hensuki – Are you willing to fall in love with a pervert, as long as she’s a cutie?

Original Run: July 8, 2019 - September 23, 2019
Number of Episodes: 12
Genre: Comedy, Harem, Romance
Based on the Series Created: Tomo Hanama and sune

***Warning, the following may contain spoilers for Hensuki: Are you willing to fall in love with a pervert, as long as she’s a cutie?. Reader discretion is advised.***

Series Synopsis

Keiki Kiryuu (voiced by Hiro Shimono) is a member of his school’s calligraphy club, and like many teenage boys, his biggest want is to have a girlfriend. However, the thought of ever getting one is more like an improbable dream. That dream then becomes a sudden possibility when Keiki finds a pair of panties and a letter addressed to him in his club room.

The letter is an admission of love to Keiki, but it is not signed. Since Keiki was the one who had the key to the room, the list of potential writers, who he has dubbed his Cinderella, is small.

To discover his admirer’s identity, Keiki begins to take a much bolder approach to his fellow female clubmates:

To Keiki’s surprise, though, instead of discovering who the Cinderella is, he finds out that his clubmates have a far different, far more perverse side to their personalities.

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Series Positives

I am of two opinions concerning Hensuki: Are you willing to fall in love with a pervert, as long as she’s a cutie? (Hensuki).

On the one hand, this series was as flat and as standard as you can get. The story was routine, the characters weren’t anything special, big “reveals” were ridiculously telegraphed in advance, and everything else was the absolute definition of the word generic.

On the other hand, Hensuki was a Seven studios production, and therefore generic is a pretty significant upgrade. Although Seven has done great work with many of its short-form series – Danna ga Nani o Itteiru ka Wakaranai Ken, My Wife is the Student Council President (season one), and the Ai Mai Mi franchise – it’s long-form attempts have ranged from broken and annoying to some of the worst things I have ever watched. This is the studio that gave us the insanely dull Holmes of Kyoto and the utterly abysmal Ousama Game.

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To put it simply, when I saw Seven’s name attached to Hensuki, my hopes weren’t particularly high. Thus, you might imagine my surprise when I found myself not hating this show. Granted, Seven is credited as Animation Production Assistance. Geek Toys was the primary studio behind this show. But since this is my first exposure to Geek Toys’ works, I can’t say how much they or Seven contributed – or detracted – to Hensuki being what it ended up being.

Just so we are clear, this series wasn’t good. However, I feel more compelled to say nice things about it because my expectations were so meager.

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To its credit, Hensuki didn’t have any characters that were annoying, infuriating, or unlikeable. Many of the characters did have one specific problem, but we will save that for later. But if I had to pick one person who served as a reliable pillar for this series, then I would have to say that person was Keiki Kiryu.

Given the nature of this series, it needed a robust straight-man character, and Keiki filled that roll sufficiently enough. He knew how to vary his reactions depending on who he was interacting with, but it also never felt like he was just being dragged by other people’s flows. More importantly, and this was critical, it wasn’t hard to believe that Keiki could have multiple admirers. He was reliable, kind, and always willing to go out of his way to assist.

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Although it did help Keiki considerably that all his opposites were interesting to a degree, it was clear that this series did have its favorites. For this part of the review, though, I think it is enough to say there was a balance amongst the characters’ personalities, and you simply can’t ask for much more when it comes to harem anime. For everything Hensuki did by the book, this was one area where that was to its benefit.

Lastly, there is something I must bring up. I’ll tell you right now that I am not going to recommend this show. Be that as it may, I would be remiss if I didn’t give credit where it is rightly due. What Hensuki did was prove that even in a harem, fanservice heavy series, the primary protagonist doesn’t have to have a romantic possibility with everyone.

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In Hensuki, Keiki had a purely platonic friendship with Koharu Ootori (voiced by Ayaka Ohashi). They were not interested in one another romantically. They didn’t harbor any sort of crush between each other, and this series didn’t even suggest they would ever be a couple. Instead, Keiki helped Koharu jump-start her own love story. It should be noted that Koharu’s version of love involved intensely stalking her target, who was an open lolicon.

So, yeah, there were complications. Still, the point of the matter is, if a show like Hensuki can have a male character remain only friends with a female character, then let that be a lesson for all other harem stories that think it is a good idea for the harem center to be inundated with as many routes as possible. More is not necessarily better. If anything, it’s cumbersome, and you cannot possibly expect to get to know everyone in a single twelve-episode series.

Case in point, Hensuki.

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Series Negatives

Hensuki’s animation was terrible. As a rule, I don’t like to overpraise a show for its visuals since I see them as secondary to more crucial factors, i.e., story and characters. The natural flip side to that would be not blasting a series for its lackluster artwork. I may mention poor animation and bad CGI as a general annoyance, but I don’t remember the last time this has bothered me as much as it did with Hensuki.

Everything looked static, and the character designs, in particular, were like paper cutouts. I’m going to feel bad about saying this, but I don’t have a better way to phrase it:

Hensuki looked ugly.

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Now I know there have been shows with far worse animation to come out in 2019. I mean, I sat through Try Knights for crying out loud. I think I was more put off by Hensuki because at least the voice acting and many of the jokes in this series weren’t awful. Therefore, the disconnect between what I was seeing and what I was hearing was much more irritating.

But that wasn’t what bothered me the most about this show. What did bother me the most was actually two things.

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First, Hensuki completely took away the fun that could have been had with trying to find out who the mystery Cinderella was. This show all but came out and said who the person was in the very first episode. And for the answer to work and for it to not be incredibly creepy and morally wrong, it required turning Keiki into an absolute idiot. Basically, Keiki believed two parents could have children be born only five months apart as long as they tried really, really hard.

Second, there were five possible routes in Keiki’s harem, and there didn’t need to be that many. Of all the options who felt important and were worth rooting for, I would say the winner was Koharu. And as you can see, that was a problem because Koharu wasn’t even an option. None of the girls who had an interest in Keiki were given anywhere close to enough time. For example, I completely forgot Mao Nanjou was in this show despite being one of the leading female members of the calligraphy club.

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Keiki might have been a decent center, but never once during this show did I think he might end up with someone.

Is this something a second season could fix? Maybe, but I can’t imagine there ever being a continuation of this show. The last episode especially had to drag itself across the finish line, so it seemed to me that Hensuki had run out of ideas.

With a studio that doesn’t have the greatest reputation backing it, Hensuki could have been trash. But just because it wasn’t doesn’t mean it was, by default, good.

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Final Thoughts

It would seem that a series can exceed all my expectations and still come up short.

Although this show had a strong main character and I would be lying if I said I didn’t have some fun with it, that wasn’t enough. The majority of this series was as generic as can be, from the animation to the story to the mystery to the supporting cast.

For that reason, it would be wrong for me to recommend this. After all, I would basically be saying you should go ahead and waste your time.

Hensuki: Are you willing to fall in love with a pervert, as long as she’s a cutie? is one you can skip.

But these are just my thoughts. What are yours? Have you seen this show? How would you advise Hensuki: Are you willing to fall in love with a pervert, as long as she’s a cutie?? Leave a comment down below because I would love to hear what you have to say.

And if you liked what you have read, be sure to follow me on my social media sites so that you never miss a post or update. Also, please share this review across the internet to help add to the discussion.

I’m LofZOdyssey, and I’ll see you next time.

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