An utterly watchable, wholly enjoyable, eminently forgettable show that relies almost exclusively on the assumption that you want to watch its heroine discover exactly how far arrogance and a pretty face can get you in anime.
Which, coincidentally, seems to also be the aesthetic of the show itself: it looks great, assures you it’s good, and…that’s about it. There’s no great thematic thread or character exploration or insight. It’s just a cute girl finding out how far self-assured cuteness can take her. And if, for some unfathomable reason, you don’t like her (or don’t like laughing at her, really)…uh…pretend it’s a meta-critique of cutesy anime that has no depth beyond its cutesiness? I guess?
Look, I liked Girlish Number. I’d watch a second season of Girlish Number. Heck, I’d happily buy the Blu-Ray/DVD combo-pack of Girlish Number, at retail price, and I’d even drive to the store to do it. But my compulsively obligatory bedtime routine of clutching a pillow and watching comfort anime doesn’t excuse the fact that, over the show’s 12 episodes, there is only ever one thread of real character depth (Gojo’s professional history)—and it is used so sparingly and so late in the game that it may as well have been put there by accident.
Ultimately, Girlish Number is a series that you can literally judge by its cover. No, seriously. Go look at it. Whatever your reaction, it’ll give you exactly that for 12 episodes.
That said, the heroine’s kinda cute, so…it does have that going for it.
*The things that I liked the most in this anime came from the characters themselves. First of these things was that almost all the characters had a double personality in this anime and it showed how people can put up a facade in order to achieve more. Let’s take the main female Chitose as an example. When she’s on stage or in front of her bosses she’s the most obedient girl you can imagine. But besides that you see her true cocky personality. How she thinks that she’s the center of the world and the best seiyuu around contradicted her facade completely. And this can be said about almost every character.
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*Continuing about Chitose’s personality, as you can expect Chitose did change during this anime. But that was one of the more interesting things during the course of this anime. How she slowly started to realize that she wasn’t as great as she thought she was. She was not the best seiyuu, on the contrary she’s actually quite a weak seiyuu. So maybe it wasn’t much but seeing Chitose realizing this and than also wanting to change for the better was a predictable but ok plot.
*So the good things about GN came from the characters, the weaker things came from the story. Just like in my review of WWW.Working!! I felt that this anime bit off more than it could chew. With that I mean the side stories, also here there were a lot of side stories that missed a lot of development. There was again too much material introduced to conclude over the course of 12 episodes. One example is that I wanted more development in the relationship between Momoka and her mother.
*And I’m going to go even further than that. I felt that the main storyline of this anime was chosen wrong. The character that, in my opinion, should have been the main character of this entire anime was Gojou. His past as a seiyuu was much more interesting than Chitose’s storyline. I wanted to know what happened when he was a seiyuu and why he quitted being one. Now that’s only touched very briefly upon but that would have and should have been the main storyline of GN.
So as a conclusion, I went into GN without large expectations and that was a good thing since this is not the greatest anime you’ll ever see. It’s ok, I saw it but I won’t remember it for a long time. So overall I’m going to rate Gi(a)rlish Number at 3 stars. This is an anime that you just watch to watch a simple minded anime. Even if you want to see an anime based on the seiyuu world, I think that there are far better options out there.