Review of My Love Story

mylovestory

Romance shows are so dull. Once you have watched one lovey-dovey series you have pretty much seen them all, as they all follow the same uninspired narrative. Or so I thought. My Love Story (also known as Ore Monogatari) stands out from the crowd thanks to its male lead. Instead of starring an effeminate pretty boy, protagonist Takeo Goda is a fifteen-year-old kid who has the body of an eighties roided out wrestler and looks that only a mother could love. Needless to say he isn’t very popular with the ladies, who instead prefer Takeo’s dreamy best bud Makoto Sunakawa.

ODD COUPLE

I hear that Japan’s railway service is top notch thanks to its punctual trains. Delay free travel comes at a price however; as hentai has taught me that the countryโ€™s rail lines are infested with molesters. One day, on the commute to school, Takeo spots one of these gropers harassing an innocent girl. Incensed by the lecherous behaviour, Takeo pummels the sleazebag before handing him over to the cops. Rinko Yamato, the dainty lady Takeo rescued, is so smitten by her saviour’s heroics that she cannot resist asking him out on a date. Who knew that some females are into guys that resemble gorillas?

Normally a show of this nature would test my patience with two-dozen episodes of melodrama. Will they or won’t they hook up? Thankfully author Kazune Kawahara, who penned the manga that this anime is based on, dispensed with all that nonsense. After just a few episodes Takeo and Rinko are officially an item. Rather than tease its audience the series instead focuses on telling humorous tales about the fledgling couple. We get stories dealing with their first kiss, Takeo competing at a Judo tournament and a finale featuring a love rival who threatens to steal Rinko’s heart. There’s also a trip to the beach too. Heaven forbid that we get an anime devoid of bikinis!

BEAUTY IS IN THE EYE OF THE BEHOLDER

My Love Story does an excellent job of showing how different genders react to romance. When Takeo’s pals learn that he has a girl they waste no time in congratulating him. Rinko’s friends on the other hand cannot resist making snide remarks about her man’s appearance. Girls can be rather judgemental when it comes to looks. Thankfully Takeo is able to win over the critics… even if earning the approval of Rinko’s peers required that he use his brawn to save them from a burning building! Not everyone with a vagina is that shallow though. Takeo’s selfless personality doesn’t go unnoticed. Despite his physical deficiencies he attracts a number of admirers via his willingness to always aid those in need.

One failing that Takeo’s might and altruistic principles can’t overcome is how dense he is when it comes to matters of the heart. Thankfully his BFF Suna is always close by to impart relationship advice. Suna’s knowledge on courtships is surprising, as he has never had a girlfriend. There’s a long line of moist gals (and one bespectacled stalker) who would love to jump his bones, but for whatever reason he always turns down members of the opposite sex. Maybe he is gay? Nah. That one time Takeo tried to practice kissing on Suna, in a scene that will make fujoshis squeal, he wasn’t receptive to the idea at all.

VERDICT

I am awarding My Love Story a five star rating. The series is one of those rare shows that can appeal to anyone. Girls will dig the romance whilst guys can enjoy the jokes. Despite being overly cute the anime never made me want to hurl. The showโ€™s unconventional heartbreaker offsets the sparkle heavy mushy moments, as do the hilarious visual gags. It also gives hideous freaks like myself hope. You don’t have to be a genius or possess Brad Pitt’s looks to lead a happy life. Takeo has a ton of friends and found love just by being a nice guy. Want a girlfriend? Just man up and help that cutie that is being harassed next time you hop on the underground. Sadly for me my town doesn’t have a train station. Doh!

53 thoughts on “Review of My Love Story

  1. I really want to watch this now. You made it sound so lovely and interesting. Romance and love storys, usually aren’t my thing, but this it sounds so good. I think I’ll give it a go ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. I’ve been meaning to watch this one, being someone who enjoys romance anime. Thanks for the suggestion!

    • I’m surprised to hear that you haven’t watched My Love Story is you are a fan of romance. The series seems to be quite popular and highly rated. If you check it out let me know what you thought of it.

  3. As a guy who enjoys a romance series, many of them fall flat due to the genres tendency of relying on tropes rather than substance. Thankfully that isn’t the case here and this is easily one of the more digestible romance series to come out for both sexes due to it’s focus on the relationship rather than the chase. Madhouse knocks it out of the park pretty often, and I was quite pleased with this series. On a related and ironic note the day I finished this series is when I met my now girlfriend, how is that for coincidences?

    • Wow, what a coincidence. Maybe I should force myself to watch more romance shows to increase my chances of finding someone haha. I think when it comes to manga/anime a lot of writers overestimate how entertaining the thrill of the chase is. Either that or they don’t have confidence that they can keep a reader’s attention with stories about an ongoing relationship.

      • RE: “increase my chances of finding someone haha”

        You young guys have it easy. You have the INTERNET as a tool to meet girls. I used to have to go to square dances to meet very highly protected country gals. You have to ignire the Father with the shotgun. I had to put up with Bluegrass banjo music at these dances. BANJOS!!

  4. I like that the writer doesn’t go into the will they or won’t they routine like so many shows. I haven’t watched, but I like your write up anyway.

    • Thank you. I too appreciate the direction taken by My Love Story’s writer. There are countless shows that are twenty episodes of two people in love deliberating if they should go out on a date. Gets tedious after a while. Watching two people make their relationship work is more interesting.

  5. You’re making me look bad now. :/ I went with 4 1/2 stars because on second viewing I found some of the umming and erring early going a bit repetitive. Otherwise I can’t dissent from how awesome this show is! ๐Ÿ™‚

    • I can’t comment on how the series holds up to repeated viewings because this was my first time watching it. These days it’s hard finding free time to watch 24 episodes let alone the same anime twice.

      • Binge watching a series does expose both positives and negatives in equal measures, although this wasn’t much of a negative per se, it did stand out more this time around.

  6. Thanks for a well written review. You touched upon the points that I too enjoyed and I did enjoy the anime even if I am not a big fan of romance. A guys perspective, especially within that genre is something quite rare & I quite liked the fact that the protagonist didn’t fit in with the ideal bishounen image. The practice kissing scene was hilarious!

    My only complaint was that the story focused a little too long on the insecurities & the misunderstandings that arise for finding funny situations. After a few episodes, the formula felt repetitive and it became harder for me to find the motivation to finish the series. It’s definitely one of the better romcom anime though, totally worth the watch.

    • It is nice to see a romance story more from a guy’s point of view, as many shows of this ilk do tend to focus more on the woman’s feelings. Comedy plays a big part in this series so they did rely on goofy misunderstandings a lot. Maybe they could have made it feel less repetitive if they had stretched out the misunderstandings into longer story arcs? I was okay with the drama being resolved in one or two episodes though.

  7. I’m not big on romance stories either. I like a little romance in story, but it doesn’t often work well for me when it’s the main focus. This sounds good though.

    On a side note, I always imagine men were more judgmental about appearance. I thought women were more likely to see character. But maybe that’s just me. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • When it comes to appearances I think society warps perceptions. Guys tend to be quite vocal about spotting a hottie for example but many women put a lot of effort into dressing up nice and using makeup, which attracts attention in the first place. Guys aren’t that obsessed with looks I would argue. If they were you wouldn’t see regular looking chaps dating overweight women for example.

      The scene I was talking about was pretty much Takeo’s friends saying “way to go” when he announced he had a girlfriend. Rinko’s pals on the other hand wasted no time in gossiping behind her back to comment on her BF’s looks. All that said, anyone who sees Rinko and Takeo holidng hands would raise an eyebrow, as they are so different in terms of height.

  8. Sounds like this one definitely steps outside of some of the more common patterns. Any time someone who normally doesn’t like a genre or story type has this kind of response, I’m definitely interested. I’m adding it to my list. Thanks for the recommendation.

      • Those are the ones I hope to find, though there’s also the question of how they break the norm. It’s funny how stories that diverge too far also often falter. We only tolerate so much “different”.

  9. I’ve heard lots about this show and everyone seems to love it. Admittedly, I’ve never watched an anime where romance is the main plot point, this may have to be the first.

  10. Hi, there…your writing is thoroughly engaging–evidenced by the fact that I don’t play video games, and know almost next to nothing about anime.
    You, however have won me over with your fantastic review, wit, and charming way of communicating and connecting (starting with “Greetings and salutations”–which put me in mind of the children’s book, “Charlotte’s Web”). Anyway, I’m “following” you…thanks for sharing ๐Ÿ™‚

    • It’s a cool anime. Even people who don’t like romance shows have commented that they liked My Love Story due to the humor and likable protagonist. Thanks for the relationship advice. I’m single so I should work harder on being nice. Due to my introverted ways I come across as cold, which doesn’t help in attracting a partner.

      • Sometimes we let our insecurities get in the way from approaching people. If you have confidence in yourself, I am sure you can get a girlfriend. Based on your writing and sense of humor, many girls would be charmed if they get to know you. ๐Ÿ™‚

        I will write this anime down on my list so I can watch it later. You got me curious.

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