Type: TV (12 episodes)
Next in series:
Ai Yori Aoshi
Kauru was raised by a rich family to inherit a family fortune and business. When his mother died, he realized it was a life he didn't want and ran away from home. Kauru severed ties with his family, making things difficult getting by with no support, but somehow he managed. He's now independent and attending college, but his past catches up with him in a way very unexpected.
Aoi was a girl the family arranged him to marry when they were children. While he remembers her fondly, he'd almost forgotten about her... until the day she shows up on his doorstep, still intent on marrying him. Aoi having been raised to marry into a rich powerful family, means Kauru would have to return to his; something he refuses to do. Will love be enough to keep them together?
Ai Yori Aoshi (Bluer Than Indigo) has good and bad points, although admitting I hated every female character introduced (aside from Aoi) makes me wonder how many good points it really has.
Ai Yori Aoshi starts with the intriguing setup of a near perfect girl showing up on a guy's doorstep, intent to marry him. The episodes they spend together in his apartment leverages the charm of the concept. Then other girls are added to the mix, and the anime goes downhill into generic harem territory.
Aoi is more a girlfriend ideal than character. She's dull in that respect, but hard not to like. She's one of those characters who grows on you even if there doesn't appear to be any reason why. A guardian is introduced to keep them from advancing the relationship too fast (which this anime is certainly in no danger of doing). Add a stereotypical American girl serial boob-grabber, a maid who's purpose is to serve up cosply fetish material (for a club *cough*), and a young annoying girl who is supposed to be 16 but acts like she's 12.
The romance between Aoi and Kauru is cute but weak, and the rest of the harem is annoying and unnecessary. I'd say that's the big problem: harem anime with weak harem. Better to skip unless you're starved for any sort of romance.
Aoi essentially has no faults; embodying the Japanese concept of "Yamato Nadeshiko" - meaning something like "ideal of femininity". Mind you she's also been raised to the standard of that ideal. Unfortunately that leaves little room for a true personality. It's unfair to say she's just a Yamato Nadeshiko when she's spent her whole life cultivated to be one. Still, it's hard to empathize with her for that reason too, because she's a bit out of touch by normal standards.
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