Pet Girl’s Plot Is Stretched In Two Opposite Directions

Sakurasou Face Focus

As The Pet Girl of Sakurasou (or Pet Girl for short) nears its 10th episode most of the stage is set and the main story is already set in motion. However it has become clear that Pet Girl is zigzagging between two different plots, almost to the point of making us feel we are watching two different shows that were meshed together. Can Pet Girl’s plot hold it together when the director stretches its plot in two opposite directions?

When Pet Girl began I had a fairly good grasp of what to expect from it. It was built from the ground up to be a romantic comedy with a sprinkle of drama, one that starts all silly and then becomes more serious in the end. Or so I thought. The first few episodes, in which we are introduced to the main character, are understandable goofy and cliché. In the current saturated anime market it’s hard to come by a unique approach to romantic comedy. Some series still try, but not Pet Girl. Pet Girl proudly presented itself as a harem show from the get-go and had us deal with it. Then from episode 3-6 it lowered the raunchy and comedy levels a bit to introduce more intimate character details – Sorato’s aspiration of becoming a game designer, Mashiro’s desire to draw manga, Misaki’s unrequited love for Jin and so on. There was even a deep (if flawed) sub-theme regarding the bad influence highly talented people have on regular, hardworking, folks. For a while it seemed the series has calmed down and is ready to commit to a more engrossing original plot.

The problems began to arise when in episode 7 the show drops any and all the seriousness it might have accumulated and plunges shamelessly back into harem antics. Episode 7, in which Sorato’s little sister declares her eternal love to him and tries to outsmart her rivals, is the raunchiest episode yet. To be honest I consider it the nastiest and most irrelevant episode in the series to date. By the next episode Sorato’s sister is already gone (for good I hope) and the show continues on like nothing had ever happened. Another relatively serious episode goes by, but is immediately augmented by yet another raunchy episode. Episode 9 introduces Mashiro’s past British roommate Rita. She is blond and outgoing and for some unknown reason choses to sleep in Sorato’s room (she is the 3rd girl to do that by the way). Although Rita is in no way as irritating or hyper as Sorato’s little sister she still pulls Pet Girl back to harem-land. That wouldn’t be a problem if Pet Girl finally admitted it is a pure harem show, but episode 9 desperately tries to no avail to be dramatic. The need to appease harem fans and at the same times strike a serious and deep cord is no easy task. Sadly Pet Girl proves it cannot stand to this task. Its harem nature is detrimental to its human drama and vice versa. Considering Pet Girl needs to step out of its comfort zone each time a serious event occurs it might be a change for the better if Pet Girl throws away any existing pretense it still retains and focus solely on being an entertaining harm show.

 


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