Creators in Pack’s 2015 slice-of-life clearly was not to everyone’s taste yet it remains a great little show with twelve four-minute episodes to enjoy. It’s your basic family comedy following the lives of five siblings who live together whilst their parents are off travelling. Their adventures are relayed from the point of view of the single brother High Schooler Haruki Nakano who has to endure the craziness of his four sisters: Mutsuki the older High School girl, Yayoi the younger middle schooler and the two twins Uzuki & Satsuki who are in elementary school. The story spins on the tensions between the five as they endure the typical love/hate relationship to be expected by such a family group. In unguarded moments Yayoi is very affectionate towards her brother but mostly expresses her fondness by thumping him and wrestling him to the floor. Elder sister Mutsuki tries hard to play Mum but loves to revert to childhood so she can play with her little brother. She can often be found asleep in Haruki’s room much to his annoyance. The little ones adore him but wish he would be a little cooler as he likes to stay in his room and play computer games. They take every opportunity to torment their big brother and play tricks on him. The four-panel manga series was from the pen of Kazusa Yoneda and ran for ten years ending in 2021.
The adventures of the five mainly happens with the four walls of their small apartment. In one typical episode - the obligatory “beach episode” – the sub-genre is subverted when Mutsuki & Yayoi end up in a kiddy paddling pool just so the girls can rekindle happy childhood beach memories. Haruki find himself pressurised into going along with what his sisters want even if he privately thinks it a ridiculous idea. He is clearly the hen-pecked brother yet he is kind hearted and mild-mannered so it doesn’t bother him too much. He often muses to himself about the mystery of sisters as they seem to baffle him. It is a common theme in the show that the girls show their love for their brother when it suits them. They fall back on him as a source of comfort which may well be natural for girls without a father figure around. “Danchigai” is a gentle and charming little family comedy. Why some didn’t like it is a mystery as it is pretty inoffensive. It is about as good as you will get with a show made to this formula. It remains a heart-warming comedy about a tight-knit sibling group in which the single boy is outwitted and outnumbered by his sisters. What’s not to like? Well written and wonderfully delivered in short episodes it is certainly recommended and a show anime fans should check out.