Sekai-ichi Hatsukoi: World's Greatest First Love

Alt title: Sekai-ichi Hatsukoi

Sekai-ichi Hatsukoi: World's Greatest First Love
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enikoe's avatar
Jan 16, 2020

I really loved this anime, binge watched the 2 seasons...
However, the main character didn't evolve too much it was rather annoying after a point. And all the characters in general, were so much alike, the same pattern in every relationship and individual. Not to mention the art itself, it's very pretty, but there's only two kinds of faces and bodies, everyone looks the same so it made it confusing to watch, many times only the hair colour was different so I had to stop and go back to check or just couldn't understand what was going on in the first few minutes.
In addition, the second season's finale just leaves us on a hook, there isn't much closure, I guess a third season was in plan, but it never came out...so I'm just left here heartbroken longing for more.

8/10 story
8/10 animation
10/10 sound
7/10 characters
8/10 overall
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Hanabiko's avatar
Dec 31, 2019

Boring!

Cheesy characters, completely unreal. They end up in sexism and abuse without even realizing it (forced kisses, veto on doing this or that, mental manipulation etc.). Also the stories are all the same, the characters all the same, flat, in love after 5 minutes, they all say the same things, they are all insecure the same way or perfect and stoic the same way. I think can work only for teenage girls who like shoujo style.

2/10 story
5/10 animation
3/10 sound
2/10 characters
5/10 overall
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Maarten's avatar
Dec 6, 2017

Beautiful love story about a boy who loves a other boy(s).

I like this animation, and the music is good.

I can't wait to watch Sekai-ichi Hatsukoi TV 2.

8/10 story
9/10 animation
9/10 sound
9/10 characters
9/10 overall
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GrellSutcliffe's avatar
Jul 8, 2017

I love this anime alot. Between the backstory for Tanaka and Ritsu to the serious moments and the playful moments, it's a great BL anime. I wish they would dub it in english~ The only problem i have is not with the show but with the site. They have a promotional video on as the first episode and then watching the actual 12th episode does not count.

10/10 story
10/10 animation
10/10 sound
10/10 characters
10/10 overall
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jameswarrensaid's avatar
Dec 16, 2016

The story of Masamune and Ritsu meeting in high school is just adorable. I love the flashback scenes showing the two of them interacting in high school - it's so sweet. It's also a great contrast with the present - where Ritsu is no longer the sweet, reserved, naive person that he was as a student.

The story easily surpasses Junjou for me. I found myself more deeply invested in Ritsu than Misaki, and I felt like the secondary love stories where more interesting than Junjou's. Although I still don't understand why different characters have to have the same exact hair (Shouta and Chiaki; in Junjou - Misaki and pretty much every one else).

If you enjoy the genre, World's Greatest First Love is a beautiful, mature love story that I hope will be continued in the future! 

10/10 story
10/10 animation
10/10 sound
10/10 characters
10/10 overall
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ffcfran's avatar
May 29, 2016

By the same author as Junjou Romantica. If you love that you will love this. the characters are actually connected to the other series. the characters are some of my favorites ever. stubborn as can be. also some interesting and comedic views of working in the manga industry.

10/10 story
10/10 animation
10/10 sound
10/10 characters
10/10 overall
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Yogobunny's avatar
Jan 23, 2016

The very begining was probably the best part of Sekai-ichi Hatsukoi because of the aniticipation; Onodera and Takano didn't recognize each other, yet we knew they went out in the past in their high school years. The overall anime was pretty good, and they did a good job with the comedy side of things, but I find it very irritating when the characters play coy when things are obvious. Other than that, I have no complains with the anime and look forward to watching the second one.

8.3/10 story
7/10 animation
7/10 sound
8/10 characters
7.8/10 overall
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PipM111's avatar
Sep 19, 2015

Sekaiichi hatsukoi was my introduction to the BL genre, seeing as I am a huge BL fan now I know hatsukoi must of done something right. In this review I will mainly be covering the main couple but will touch on the other character at the end of the review. This review is also very opinion based and may be bias, just a heads up. This is also my first review every so some feedback is welcome! 

 

Anime overview 

The anime follows 3 different couples, the main couple being Onodera Ritsu and Takano Masamune. Ritus is the son of a successful publishing company who has been accused by his co-workers of riding his father’s coat tails. Angered by this he quits his father’s company and joins Marukawa Publishing only to find he's been placed in the shoujo manga department despite being a literature editor previously. A little while after being placed in the department he finds out his boss, Takano, is actually his old high school lover who broke his heart causing his personality to become rather jaded. He then finds out the heart break was all a misunderstanding and Takano swears that he will make Ritsu say he loves him again. 

The anime is a romantic comedy than looks at the daily lives of manga editors in a comedic fashion. The mix of comedy and romance really fits together well and makes the anime a lot of fun to watch.

Characters

Onodera Ritsu as a character for me was very refreshing. Despite being exceptionally Tsudere and evasive I actually found he resistance rather satisfying. Often in these types of anime when a character swears they will never fall of the main dude, about an episode later they are dating them like they never said it. Ritsu on the other hand sticks by his word for the most part and actively trys not to fall for Takano, despite the fact he is already in love with him. For the most part Ritsu maintains a good balance of denial and acceptance when it come to Takano, but later in the series drags these feelings on a bit to much to the point where as a watcher I started to feel irritated. He knows later on he is in love but still tries to avoid Takano which was frustrating but still admits it enough to start a sexual relationship with him which makes his character a bit contradictory

Takano Masamune is the seme in this relationship and has a very "hands on" approach when it comes to demonstrating his affection. As a character he is very honest and blunt, saying things how they are and refusing to sugar coat anything. He is very controlling and demanding in his work and likes to abuse his authority in a comedic way making him an enjoyable character in the series. The only problem I have with him is his very physical approach to handing his feeling for Ritsu. He will often molest Ritsu or be very forceful despite Ritsu's protests making some of the more intimate scene very uncomfortable to watch. Despite this side I still found him an enjoyable character.

Soundtrack 

The soundtrack as a whole is decent. The opening and ending themes are enjoyable and the character songs are nice as well. The rest of the soundtrack in my opinion was forgettable and not something I'd go out of my way to listen to, but suited the scenes they were used in well.

Other characters/plots

There are two other minor couples in Sekaiichi Hatsukoi, the first being between Hatori and Chiaki. Hatori is Chiaki's manga editor and childhood friend who has been in love with him for years. Chiaki is a complete airhead and doesn't notice his feelings and Chiaki's assistant Yuu also has a thing for Chiaki. This is in my opinion the most frustrating and least enjoyable story in Sekaiichi hatsukoi. Chiaki as a character can be frustrating and the love triangle is more of an annoyance than a drama as the viewer already knows who Chiaki will end up with.

Kisa and Yukina are the final couple in the show. Kisa is a 30 year old editor who has never fallen in love, all of his relationships have either been one night stands or completely sexual. Despite this he finds himself falling for the prince like Yukina and soon realizes he's in love but believes he will never be good enough for Yukina. This is possibaly one of the best stories in the show and as a viewer I found myself rooting for Kisa and Yukina's relationship. The story between them is completely believable and the most realistic in the show as Kisa has feelings and thoughts than any normal person would have making them a very enjoyable couple.

Verdict

In all the story between Ritsu and Takano takes a more realistic standpoint than other BL animes would. While other BL animes would have the main couple sleeping together by episode 2, sekaiichi hatsukoi takes its time to build the relationship to create a more realistic story. The main problem with the story is the molesting scenes and the parts where Takano takes advantage of Ritsu, however with these types of scenes being common in BL animes it shouldn't effect fans too much.

Overall Sekaiichi hatsukoi in my opinion is a 8.5 out of 10. The story is good and most of the characters are enjoyable, the only real let down for me personally is the couple of Hatori and Chiaki and the overuse of molesting to advance the story. If you can handle this however then this anime should defiantly go on your to watch list! :D  

8/10 story
?/10 animation
7/10 sound
8/10 characters
8.5/10 overall
PoeticHorrorShow5287's avatar
Aug 10, 2014

I love this showwww! It is so good man...the back and forth between stories and the dialogue was just everything. Even when I worried it would get cheesy, it didn't. It's BL which I love and its very romantic. My favorite storyline is Takano and Onodera, though all three are good. I just can't wait to watch part 2. This show is super addictive and pretty much a giant ball of fluff. It reminded me a little of a fanfiction the way it plays everything out, but don't take my word for it, just watch it.

Story: like I said, I loved this. It's pretty much a slice of life anime but cleverly placed within a manga editing company. This leads to a lot of funny moments and almost 4th wall breaks. I watched the OVAs first so I knew the background on four of our six main characters and as the show goes along, you switch between the 3 storylines. The characters are all tied together by the fact that they work in the same division. There's a lot to love here. I don't really think I need to go into the story too much because you should just watch it yourself.

Animation: Very well done. The characters, though similarly drawn, still look gorgeous and I love the scenery but the key elements are as follows:

Music: I wasnt too much a fan of the opening music, but the ending theme was really good. However, the OST for this show is probably one of my favorites of any anime I've seen. It was beautiful and placed perfectly throughout the show, leading to tears and smiles and all the other feels. I just adored it.

and

The Characters: as I stated earlier, they look similar but their personalities all differ giving the viewer a variety of people to identify with. All of them were strongly characterized and played beautifully by the voice actors as well. I watched this subbed and it was wonderful. I also enjoyed all the love scenes which there are a lot of, and all the revelations which there are also a lot of. It was just so good.

Overall: I'd recommend it and I'd definitely watch it again. I loved it.

9/10.

8/10 story
8/10 animation
9/10 sound
9/10 characters
9/10 overall
LuniaAngel's avatar
Mar 3, 2014

So I just watched the anime Sekai Ichi Hatsukoi or World's Greatest First Love. To me it was great yaoi after watching Junjou Romantica. It was fun seeing those character hinted and brought up at parts of this animes plot.  I LOVED the pairings, they were really cute and of course my favorite was Masamune and Rittsu ♥ Masamune was beyond my favorite character, his eyes of course being my favorite thing atop his personality.And over all it ended quite decently without anything being left off or completely in need of a 3rd season. Def. A good anime too watch if you enjoy Boy X Boy and great artwork~ Ill probably read the manga to this too sooner or later, well off to the next anime x3

9/10 story
9/10 animation
?/10 sound
10/10 characters
10/10 overall
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londonafrost's avatar
Apr 15, 2012

To be honest I am a Yaoi fan and this met all the requirements I have for anime and Yaoi.  I can't wait to watch it again!

10/10 story
8/10 animation
8/10 sound
9/10 characters
9/10 overall
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Vinniesama's avatar
Dec 4, 2011

Back last year, when WGFL was first green-lit to have an anime TV series, I was really happy. I didn't know anything about it other than...

a) It was by Shungiku Nakamura, creator of Junjo Romantica.
b) It was about two guys who dated in high school but end up working in the same publishing company.

My expectations weren't amazingly high. Not because I thought it would be bad, but because I was determined to be as neutral as possible, even after watching the introductory OVA. I didn't want to look like a Junjo and Junjo only fangirl, and I'm kind of stepping off the BL train (until they can get better stories and characters), so this is going to be one of my last BL series I watch.

Well, I don't think I got anything much out of World's Greatest First Love. It's pretty much Junjo Romantica all over again, and while the first few episodes were okay, it really didn't do much for me.

The stories that concern the romantic lives of Ritsu Onodera and Masamune Takano, Yoshiyuki Hatori and Chiaki Yoshino and Yu Yanase, and Shota Kisa and Ko Yukina are all sweet little self-contained stories, and yes, I'd much rather see BL TV series than terrible OVAs that skip immediately to rolling in the hay, as if the animators know that the fangirls are just going to skip to that portion of the video anyway. (Much to fangirls' disappointment, there's not that much ravishing going on in this series.)

But... I think it's the characterisation that really threw me off on World's Greatest First Love. All the semé in this series were overly possesive douchebags, with the exception of Ko.

While the Ritsu and Masamune coupling was okay at first, it soon turned into Ritsu blushing and whinging and thinking about Masamune every single waking moment, and Yokozawa bullying the poor guy with a neverending slew of 'MASAMUNE'S ROMANTIC LIFE WAS RUINED FOREVER BECAUSE YOU DUMPED HIM!!!' I just didn't see any love or chemistry between them. I like them as a couple, but I feel the anime could have done better to develop them.

The Hatori, Chiaki and Yu storyline on the other hand... oh dear gods. I really didn't like it. Hatori was just a massive creep. In fact, he's almost a carbon copy of Usami from Junjo Romantica (left), only difference being that Hatori works in a publishing company, whereas Usami is a successful author with a side-gig of writing adult novels. Now, I like Usami, despite his incredible possessive-ness, but Hatori just took the cake. Expressly forbidding Chiaki from going anywhere near Yu, or showing his body to anyone except Hatori... urgh. There was just no real romance there, just Hatori being a creep and Chiaki trying to fight him off but still being such a bloody doormat that  his resistance was futile.

To be honest, I would have much preferred for Chiaki to get with Yu, because Yu seemed to be much more fun-loving, caring, and  generally had a better personality. But we can't all be my favourite coupling, I suppose.

Speaking of favourite couple... let's move on to Yukina and Kisa, the bookshop worker and the manga editor. I find their relationship somewhat adorable and somewhat silly, because it's based on the fact that Kisa happens to have edited most of Yukina's favourite books. Being a fan of the author I can understand, but not the editor. Anyway, their tender little relationship grows over time, and is done quite well in the space of two episodes, even though there really should be more.

There are 13 episodes in this series if we count the OVA. 2 episodes (15%) of Yukina and Kisa, 3 episodes (23%) of Hatori, Chiaki, and Yu, leaving us 8 episodes (62%) of pure Ritsu and Masamune non-romance. I feel maybe they could have cut out a few of the Ritsu and Masamune episodes to better develop the other couples...

Now, I was really worried about the art direction in this series to begin with. I was pleasantly surprised that the  art wasn't quite the spindly piano-fingered, thick-necked, trapezium-shaped faces that were oh so present in both the anime and the manga of Junjo Romantica. It still had the look of it, but Ritsu and Masamune weren't so bad. However, Hatori has to have the most spectacularly square-shaped mandible in anime history. The animation was okay in this series, and it used a lot of panned stills, chibi moments, and minimal animation to a fairly decent effect that I can't shave points off of for. I'm watching a BL slice of life series, I'm not looking for the most exquisite piece of animation I have ever laid my eyes on.

When talking about the music, there isn't much to credit. I barely remember any background music in this series (mostly remembering talking and talking and more talking). However, the opening and ending song eventually grew on me. I used to think the opening was this obnoxiously loud pop song, and the ending was a dull ballad, but they weren't so bad after several listens.

This being a slice of life series, there wasn't any grand overarching story. It was just couples being drawn together and going through their various problems. Ritsu was stuck in a job he didn't like, Chiaki was a stressed manga artist, and Kisa was 30 but didn't feel like he'd accomplished anything with his life. In comes the semé characters to kick them up the butt (or more than just that), stick their tongues down their throats, and remind them that true love conquers everything. Just not publishing deadlines.

All in all, I was rather bored of this whole series by the time it ended. The drama was a bit silly at times, the couples weren't that great, and it was basically Junjo Romantica but set at a publishing company. (Well, actually, the very same publishing company who publish Usami's books from Junjo Romantica, I believe.) But there were some very positive things about this series. It was nice how realistic the publishing company setting felt, rather than just being your stereotypical office job. Ritsu and Masamune have to crunch figures, write tonnes of spreadsheets, talk about colour pages and black and white pages and even attend sales meetings to determine how many books will be published. It may sound really boring, but it was quite interesting to see how manga gets published, whether it's in magazine or volume format, and this lent a certain grown-up feel to it.

I'm glad this series is about. It's a fairly mature romance that while it does pander to BL fan-girls at times, does have a heart and a soul and there are some genuinely decent and heartwarming moments. However, I'm afraid I'm going to have to give this series a 5/10 for the characterisation of some of the uké and the semé. As I've said above, they could have done a lot better than just having pushy, coercive semé for 2/3 of the couples and ukés who unfortunately have a condition where their thoughts are always audible and they never cease.

If I had it my way, Yukina and Kisa would be the star couple, but unfortunately I'll have to stick with what I've got: volumes 3-5 of the manga and episodes 8 and 9 of the anime.

?/10 story
?/10 animation
?/10 sound
?/10 characters
5/10 overall
Galadri's avatar
Oct 21, 2011

The numbers don't work, right?

I wanted to like this anime. I don't normally go for yaoi storylines, but the plot review seemed compelling and I was in the mood for something a little more adult in theme and weight. Unfortunately I found myself bored.

The main character was a self-proclaimed "jaded" adult, but was in reality a frightened man afraid to risk being hurt. The love interest was two-dimensional and there was a serious lack of character development or backstory on him. Although I am told there's a manga somewhere with his perspective I can't help thinking that information would have been far more useful than the four episodes spent on Chiaki's little love triangle. There was too much in that relationship arc to cram into the twelve episodes that should have moved the Onodera/Takano relationship forward.

In the end I felt like the show was stagnating in attempting to force fangirls to squeal over pretty boys and I found myself waiting anxiously for more information on manga editing than actually caring about the characters.

As stills of OCs with short backstory summaries on DeviantArt, I may have been able to care about the relationships. Had it actually used the first half of the season to show the initial relationship and then jumped ahead after his heartbreak (or even just the first episode) I might have cared about Onodera. In the end I just turned it off and never went back.

Meh.

6/10 story
8/10 animation
7/10 sound
7/10 characters
4/10 overall
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AshlieYagami's avatar
Sep 1, 2011

I absolutly LOVE this Anime! I am a very huge fan of Yaoi and this one is a MUST SEE for all Yaoi lovers. Its super adorable and is VERY funny. I love how each main character has their own story and conflict. You get very attached to the characters and you always want to know what is going to happen next. Its super romantic and makes you have a ton of feelings. You definitely will not be disappointed watching this. ^_^b

9/10 story
10/10 animation
10/10 sound
9/10 characters
10/10 overall
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chelsmith91's avatar
Aug 19, 2011

This show must be my favorite anime i've watched.  As i watched it i went through all kinds of emotions from being sad to happy and angry.  This show gave me butterflies in my tummy.  Its cute even though it BL, which i do not mind.  I recommend it!

10/10 story
10/10 animation
10/10 sound
10/10 characters
10/10 overall
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hisarah's avatar
Jul 3, 2011

I luv this anime its not simply bl or sex every time it has more of a cutesweet sensitive feel to it I belive it will Satisfy any boyxboy lover i also belive that even if you are qa hardcore yaoi lover this will have a fresh taste to it its simply to cute to resist it has nice art the strort is good and new to me that is

10/10 story
10/10 animation
10/10 sound
10/10 characters
10/10 overall
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gekoladie's avatar
Apr 12, 2011

Ep 1: So far, I am loving it. After watching Junjou Romantica, which is in the exact same vein as Sekai-Ichi Hatsukoi, I couldn't resist. Although I can predict the probable main plot already, no one really watches yaoi for the plot, do they? The story opens with Onodera Ritsu starting a new job at a new publishing company, but is assigned to the shoujo manga department, much to his distaste. Everyone in the department seems to be zombie-like in their exhaustion, except for Takano, the head editor of the shoujo manga editing department. There is the obligatory kiss, to remind the fangirls that it is in fact, yaoi. The next day, everyone in the department seems to have been brought back to life with extra pink, and the department has been turned into something akin to a seven year old girl's bedroom. About half way through Takano asks Onodera if he knows him from somewhere.  I predict a very awkward scene very shortly, along the lines of, "Oh sh*t, I just remembered! We had sex on the day you confessed to me!" "Oh, SH*T!". Only, it will probably contain less, "Oh sh*t" and more blushing, more perfect hair, and more apologising.

Ep2: Still loving it, and the second episode went basically how I predicted, except now Takano is attempting to seduce Onodera, so much awkwardness/romantic-ness will ensue. The plot for the episode starts with Onodera and Takano going to visit a mangaka who is having trouble meeting her deadline, after which they are both exhausted. They end up on a sofa back at the publishing company, where Takano reveals that he has remembered where he and Onodera met before: he was Onodera's first love at high school. If you have watched the OVA and/or read the manga, he was also Onodera's first. Onodera promptly remembers a bit, and it transpires that they broke up messily over a big misunderstanding, resulting in Onodera's loss of faith in love. The episode ends with Onodera conflicted about his feelings for Takano. I also really like the end song. Already can't wait for next week!

Ep3: I confess, I did get a little over-excited and read ahead in the manga, but it was worth it! If you're a fan of the, ahem, erotic scenes, then I really reccomend reading the manga as well. So, our episode opens with the introduction of a new character, Yokuzawa, who appears to have a really good relationship with Takano, and that immediately sets the unconscious jealousy bells ringing in Onodera's head. There is a bit of brooding, then Onodera's mangaka faxes over the storyboard for checking. Since all storyboards have to be checked personally by Takano, and since he lives next door, Onodera  visits him. There's a bit of editing, but it isn't long before the handjobs begin. However, before anything can get really serious, Onodera tries to escape, opening the door to reveal Yokuzawa, cue rolling credits. An episode well worth the wait, and since I was begging the internet to reveal the next installment of this highly addictive series, I was anxious to see what would happen. It was good!

Ep4: The plot picks up right where it left off last time, with a replay of Takano's quick fondling of the more delicate parts of Onodera's anatomy, followed by Onodera trying to escape. He opens the door to find Yokuzawa, they exchange a couple of insults, and Onodera rushes off to cool his growing problem. The next day at the office, Onodera's mangaka is running super late with the manuscript, and he ends up having a shouting argument with Takano and Yokuzawa that results in him going to Hokkaido to retrieve the MS. However, Takano agrees to take the blame if anything goes wrong, which only makes Onodera work harder to get it right. He gets back just in time, the manuscript is rushed off and Onodera once again goes to cool down in a bathroom. Yokuzawa appears and basically tells him it's his fault that Takano is screwed up, which Onodera doesn't understand. Skip straight to the subway, Onodera falls asleep on Takano's shoulder. Skip to the next morning, Onodera wakes up in Takano's bed slightly unclothed and immediately suspects the worst. However, we know the worst didn't happen because there was no carefully placed black shading on the edges of the screen and because there wasn't enough 'ah' or 'oh' or 'ng' for there to have been a sex scene. The episode ends with Onodera swearing that he will not fall in love with Takano - the irony  being, he probably already has. I really needed this episode - mostly because I'm still feeling the effects of the alcohol I drank in celebration of the Royal Wedding, and considering my tolerance of alcohol is zero I basically screwed myself over. Sekai-Ichi Hatsukoi continues to be the highlight of my week, once again prooving I will die alone and a virgin.

Ep5: Thus proving my theory about SIH being the same as Junjou Romantica, this week we are introduced to a new couple, Chiaki and Hatori. Hatori, who we have met before, is another shoujo manga editor at Marukawa and Chiaki is his mangaka, who works under a female penname and has been mentioned before. One day, Chiaki sees Hatori and his friend kissing in an alley. Naturally, this is a misunderstanding, but it totally throws Chiaki and he gets sick and spends a day moping in bed. Whilst sleeping on the sofa, he wakes up to Hatori kissing him. There is some short angsting, then skip ahead about three minutes to the fireworks festival where we have the touching romantic scene in which Hatori tells Chiaki he has been in love with him for twenty eight years, but he is going to stop editing Chiaki's manga because Chiaki no longer trusts him or something, which Chiaki is obviously opposed to and says he loves Hatori. Hatori assumes this means just as a childhood friend, but, naturally, we all know that it is more because of the genre. They return home, and there is a brief and chaste make-out scene with a bit of romantic name saying. As wrapped up as I was in 'The Case of Onodera Ritsu', I am very interested in this new couple because they're the one couple not in the manga - they're in the novels. I pretty much know the manga by heart now after reading it about seven times, but I refuse to spoil what will happen. If you must know, go read it. Anyway, cute couple. I suspect the aforementioned friend from the misunderstanding will be jealous of one of them, though he is obviously an uke. But yes, I am exhausted, and SIH is a brilliant respite from exams. Can't wait for next week!

Ep6: Still focusing on Chiaki and Hatori this week, we focus more on Yuu's relationships with the other two characters. Everyone except Chiaki knows that Yuu is after Chiaki in a way that is only possible for shoujo/josei characters to be. At the same time, Hatori knows Yuu likes Chiaki, creating all kinds of animosity between their characters. Still oblivious to said animosity, Chiaki is still confused about the relationship between Hatori and Yuu, he does a lot of beating about the bush on whether he likes Hatori (totally) or Yuu (nope). He has to go to some mangaka New Year's do, which provides a suitable environment for reminding the audience about the other couple, Onodera and Takano, who briefly cameo. We also get mentions of Isaka and Usagi-sensei from Junjou Romantica. Chiaki asks Yuu to go with him to the party thing, which makes Hatori more stoic/jealous, resulting in a moment of awkward sweetness and a mini temper tantrum before suddenly cutting to a wide shot of the apartment building Chiaki lives in...which means there was a sex scene, in case you don't already know the rules of BL. This is further reinforced by Chiaki looking as tired as hell the next morning, as the uke generally does. Yuu arrives, and reveals he has someone he likes. Hint. Hint. Once again, I have sort of ruined things for myself by buying the drama CDs, which took almost two weeks to import, and from what I could make out with my not-that-brilliant Japanese...well, if you want to know, buy the CDs. On the side, being introduced to the world of publishing manga is quite interesting. But it's the romance I'm more interested in. Sorry, mum, but I think I'll have to disobey your rule of no porn in the house, because if I can find uncensored versions of this series there is no way in hell I'm not watching it. Blush.

Ep7: This week, we go back to the main pairing of the show, Onodera and Takano. The episode opens with Takano rejecting a proposal for a new series Onodera wrote, leading to a whole sequence of blushing and monologuing on the part of Onodera. There is a kiss, which Yokuzawa (probably) sees, and promptly calls dibs on Takano. This leads to Onodera wondering if the other two are dating, an annoying theme that will persist for a couple more episodes if we're going by the manga. Just in case you didn't catch Takano saying "we're just friends", or something along those lines, they are not dating. Obviously. Someone who randomly tuned in on episode seven could tell this. There is more monologuing, all of which proves what Onodera is desperately trying not to prove - that he is, in fact, still/already in love with Takano. But we already knew this. In a book shop, Onodera runs into an old (and female) friend, who gets drunk and almost falls over, causing him to grab her. Guess who walks in? Takano, of course! With a really pretty woman (if you've been paying attention in the last couple of episodes, you'll notice this is Ichinose Erika, a mangaka who was after Hatori as an editor in the last episode), so there is a little bit of random jealousy on both sides. Although, considering how both Takano and Onodera are clearly gay (if the whole fancying, loving and fucking men part passed you by) but clearly neither of them have noticed this yet. Somehow. There is a brief mutual handjob scene (with accompanying line, "here, touch mine too"), which was censored, obviously, followed by blushing and panting. The next day, Isaka-san from Junjou makes a cameo again, Takano grabs Onodera's ass, and there is some very creepy chibi laughing. The episode, once again, ends with Onodera insisting he isn't in love with Takano - the irony, once again, is that he already is. I was eating a box of raspberries while watching this episode, and I confess I did accidentally spit a few of them halfway across the room at the screen during certain scenes. But I did hold the nosebleeds at bay, which is good because I'm currently extremely stressed because of exams, which makes me much more prone to them. Combine that with at least 10 minutes of boredom during exams when I finish early during which I invariably think of sex, my nose has almost constantly been dripping blood. It's amazing I haven't passed out from blood loss yet. But another extremely sweet episode. And I still can't get enough. Now to clean the raspberry stains off my bedroom...

Ep8: Once again, we meet a new couple: baby faced Kisa Shouta and sexy sexy Yukina Kou. If, at this point, you still haven't read the manga, do so now, because it will stop you being annoyed by Kisa's character, at least a little bit. And I admit, at first I found him vastly unappealing because of his face thing; he likes a pretty face. Naturally, this makes him sound uber superficial, which, to an extent, he is. In fact, we meet one of his one night stands in this episode, who he is somewhat generically rescued from by Yukina in all his multiple piercing glory. So, Kisa is yet another shoujo manga edita at Marukawa, leading to the obligatory cameos of Onodera and Takano, and he makes regular trips to Marimo book shop (if you get the Junjou reference here, you're cool/obsessed) so he can ogle one of the employees, a hot dude he only knows as Yukina who flirts outrageously with younger female customers in order to sell manga, dramatically increasing the sales rate of the shop. This means monologuing, and lots of it. Yokuzawa appears and introduces Kisa to Yukina. We have the aforementioned one night stand's appearance, followed by Yukina's quick save, and Kisa quickly runs away to drink tea in a cafe, where he is happened upon by none other than the dude he was ogling in the previous scene. Bla bla manga talk bla, Kisa concludes he doesn't have a chance with Yukina, bla bla more manga talk bla, Yukina leans over the table and kisses Kisa behind his sketch book. Cue rolling credits. I am afraid because it was my grandmother's birthday, and because I have an extremely low body mass because I'm really short (I make most anime characters look normal height, and yes, that includes Kisa Shouta) I am slightly tipsy right now, so I didn't appreciate SIH as much as I should, so I will watch it again tomorrow. But just so you know, if you're feeling the need for a bit of Kisa/Yukina mansex, read the manga and skip straight to the second chapter featuring that pairing. One word: easy. As this is the third couple in the series, it's also the one that will be least focused on, but that doesn't stop it interesting me. Kinda sweet, once you get past the slightly emo monologuing and the fact Kisa Shouta looks like a male anime version of me, which is a little scary.

Ep9: The latest installment of Kisa Shouta's love life. Just for anyone out there who hasn't read the manga and likes a bit of steamy man on man action, go and read it now because when it cuts away after the romantic staring scene, you know what happens, wink wink. So, the plot this week: Kisa's been brooding over whether he should have anything to do with Yukina or not, broods over whether he's a good editor or not, ad infinitum. He's basically been dodging Yukina's emails since the kiss last week, and eventually does go and see him because he made a promotional display in the shop because he's just that nice. Bla bla, Yukina defends Kisa from an ex, they decide to go to Yukina's for coffe, and one bow chika wow wow later, Kisa knows he's in love with Yukina, who is also in love with him. Not a particularly compelling plot, and I'm just not emotionally attached to this couple to really care all that much for their situations. More of the other two, please!

Ep10: Back to my second favourite pairing of the show, this week we have more Hatori/Chiaki fluff. Because by all rights, SIH is pure fluff. Highly censored pure fluff. But still, it warms my heart, so I'm not complaining. So, this week Chiaki is oblivious to his friend Yuu's advances, who had a slightly stalker-esque habit of drawing him a lot...including when he is sleeping. Hatori catches Yuu tickling Chiaki, which Chiaki can't see as anything but platonic. However, we (blind and deaf and dead people included) can see that Yuu's intentions are anything but pure. Hatori gets pissed off and storms out, and Chiaki takes a week to pluck up the courage to go and apologise face to face. He initially thinks Hatori's still pissed about the deadline, but it doesn't take a genius to work out that Hatori's pissed about Yuu's tickling thing. There is an almost sex scene, which Chiaki promply ruins by falling asleep...how dreadfully unromantic. He wakes up the next morning to find everything hunky-dory. Later, Chiaki mentions that he's spending the weekend at a hotspring with Yuu, at which Hatori becomes pissed again, the reason for which appears later. So, at the hotspring, Chiaki mopes and Yuu stares at him lustfully, Chiaki is oblivious and Yuu flirts a bit. That night, we find out why Hatori was pissed - it's Chiaki's birthday, and one would imagine that spending your birthday with your boyfriend is the done thing. Yuu gets drunk on champagne, and requests to draw Chiaki naked. Chiaki agreest to taking his top off, and Yuu promptly confesses, but, Chiaki being as oblivious as he is, he doesn't take it seriously. Destiny arrives in the form of a phone call from Hatori, who promptly reminds Chiaki of the real pairing of this arc (or whatever the hell you call the little stories within the show, since they aren't really arcs because they occur simultaneously, but whatever), and Chiaki promptly runs home into Hatori's arms. Cue possessive boyfriend scene, followed by romantic pink and fluffy scene, followed by fully censored sex scene which was so obviously there. The next day there is a small jokey sequence, bla bla, that made me giggle, making my brother come and check on me while the rather romantic credits were rolling...so now my brother knows I like to watch yaoi. Yay...But still, it could have been worse. Much worse. I like this pairing quite a bit, maybe because of how adorable/annoying Chiaki is, while at the same time how sweet Hatori is. I suppose I'm more emotionally involved in this pairing than the Yukina/Kisa pairing because they're on more often (I think) but not as much as Takano/Onodera, because I've read the manga. Which reminds me, if you haven't (but by this stage, you really should have!) read the manga, go do it now. I'm still waiting for chapter 5, and it's killing me because there is no scanlation and I can't read kanji! No~!

Ep11: Much like Junjou Romantica, I am going to assume the final two eps focus on Onodera and Takano (the same way JR focused on Misaki and Usami). So, this episode features a lot of establishing that editing is a buisness mostly focused on murdering employees and higher-ups yelling at each other. Onodera wakes up on the floor of his appartment, realises he's going to be late for a meeting he's supposed to watch, gets yelled at by Takano, then sits in a room where Takano, Isaka, Yokozawa and some random woman yell at each other for about five minutes. Hooray for random shouting! Skip to outside the library, there is a brief romantic scene where we remind the fans that this is, in fact, a show about romance and not about publishing, and we have a bit of kissing followed by a slap when Onodera falls down the stairs. Skip to back at the apartment, a cat (yes, the cat from the OVA) makes a guest appearance, accompanied by the permanently pissed off Yokozawa. We learn a little more about Takano's backstory - apparently, Onodera leaving him made him really messed up, meaning drinking and hookers. FEMALE hookers! What blasphemy! He must have been really, really messed up to have to want a female hooker. Unless he's bi. But whatever. It makes me unhappy. And, hint hint for maybe final episode/next season (??) note the idea of Onodera's fiancee. I will say it again, if you haven't read the manga, do it now, because it makes it pretty clear. Onodera has a fiancee, arranged by his parents, so this will either come up in the next ep or next season (please, oh gods of yaoi, please let there be a second season in the works!), which is basically Takano being jealous of some annoyingly perky girl that Onodera is obviously not into. Guess where this leads? Yes, sex! Hooray!

Ep12: No! The final episode! How will I survive without my weekly dose of anime yaoi! But anyway, this ep picks up straight from where the last one left off, with Onodera escaping the wrath of Yokozawa and moping for a few minutes. Takano knocks on the door to drop off a couple of dropped pieces of paper, leading to a neat little make-out scene - almost sex! But they're interrupted...damn. Oh, and at some point Onodera decides to seriously become a manga editor after a little encouragement from Mutou-sensei. The next day at work, Onodera publicly declares his resolution - and that is literally all the plot this episode. But more to the point, I was almost crying at the end of the show during the credits. Based on Junjou Romantica, where the manga went ahead of the anime only to be caught up with in season two, and the fact the SIH manga plot has gone further than the anime, there may be a season two! I'm not sure how popular SIH was in Japan, which will pretty much dictate if it gets a second season, but it won't be announced for about a month if it is.

10/10 story
9/10 animation
10/10 sound
10/10 characters
10/10 overall
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