Home > Check-in Station > Check-in Station: Ore no Imouto eps 1-5 (my little sister can never know I watched this show)

Check-in Station: Ore no Imouto eps 1-5 (my little sister can never know I watched this show)

I have a very love/hate relationship toward tsunderes; I suppose you can say I’m tsundere for tsunderes.  Some of my most loved and loathed characters have fallen under that category.  While I couldn’t stand Kanami Chidori (Full Metal Panic!), I grew to love Taiga Aisaka (Toradora!).  You won’t find a tsundere whose show I’ve watched that I’m ambivalent towards.  They tend to be the thing that determines whether I love or hate a show.  So when I watched the first episode of Ore Imo (I’ll call it that from now on because the real, full name is too damn long) Kirino left a strong impression on me and my opinion of this show has wavered depending on her actions and motivations ever since.  Through a DVD’s worth of episodes, does this show come closer to me being dere dere or tsun tsun for it?

Ore Imo has been a fast, yet rocky road.  I hated the first episode.  I’m sure I was the only person on the planet who didn’t give it stupendous reviews.  It was Kirino, I know her and her brother had a rocky relationship from the beginning, but she just seemed completely irrational and abusive.  It’s one thing to be selfish, pushy, even mean.  But she pushes it to an extreme.  How the hell does she get away with being such a bitch?  And how is it that Kyousuke puts up with it?  You’re the older brother!  She’s not even that cute!  There were parts that literally drove me nuts.  Her hobby for one.  Despite the fact that she’s the one playing these games for adults that littered with sexual, even incestuous material, she still looks at her brother as the pervert for questioning her about it.  Is it a leap in logic question why someone plays these games?  No!  It’s a classic case of someone leaving the worst possible impression on you from the beginning.  People say you can’t turn that around easily, but this show is trying hard.

Slowly once the show started to peel away the layers I started to get it though.  Ore Imo pulls off this ever popular, incredibly effective technique of turning the cute character into a version of the person watching.  Her rabid “otaku” love shows through strongly and the dialogue is so believable and well written that you start to sympathize with her.  And sympathizing with her shouldn’t be an easy thing.  She’s athletic, a star student and a model.  She’s little miss perfect, just waiting to be knocked off her pedestal.  The only thing that prevents that is that her glaring weakness is the thing that appeals to most people who watch her anime.  Anime!  Oh clever writer who came up with this concept, you are a conniving and wicked one.  Kirino uses her brother to make a plea, because she’s all too aware of her glaring weakness.  In the most unappealing way possible she implores him for help.  First she asks his opinion and advice on her hobby, then she takes some of that advice and goes and meets other people like her.  In public!  Before I know it, the big brother in me starts looking at this and notices that he’s smiling.  Kirino now looks super cute even the slightest hint until too late, I’ve been MOE BOMBED.  I had nearly completely forgotten about her infuriating tsundere tendencies and it’s all thanks to her brother, Kyousuke.

The story may appear to be all about Kirino, but it’s told as much through her brother Kyousuke’s eyes as through anyone’s.  He’s the one who willingly accepts her hobby; he’s the one often takes the fall for her in front of friends and family; he’s the one who takes the bulk of her abuse.  If Kirino is a strong, or even extreme case of a tsundere, then Kyousuke  is just as strong a loving, accepting brother, to the extreme.  In a strange way he’s parrelleled his sister so far as how much I love and hate aspects of his personality.  When it comes to what I love, it’s the sibling love and loyalty that he shows under the most adverse circumstances.  The third episode is a perfect example.  Kirino you would think would hide her perverse hobby a little better since her brother discovering it.  WRONG!  Her ultra strict, conservative father finds one of her little sister “loving” games and not surprisingly demands that she trash it and her hobby.  Kyousuke in one of the better scenes I’ve seen this year completely falls on the grenade for her, salvaging her hobby in its entirety.  All he can hope and does get in return in a simple thank you.  It was very admirable, it was also very stupid.  The risks don’t equal the rewards, not yet anyway.  And he’s taking a big social hit from this.  Not to mention that sometimes the people opposed to her hobby have a point.  She’s not supposed to have those adult games, and just because she has a job doesn’t mean she can do whatever she wants.

The point of this show though doesn’t appear to be the moral implication of incest and eroge.  This show is without a doubt about the love a brother has for his sister.  Second to that probably comes down to a person’s love for their hobbies and the ability for people who care about them to accept those choices.  I don’t particularly care for the incestuous overtones thrown throughout this show, but I can cosign the love an older brother has for his little sister.  Let’s just hope this show remains a parody of that sort of thing and doesn’t become what it mocks.  I’ll be sticking around for the full ride with series, anxiously awaiting to see if this will become a classic.  It has the potential to be something really great.

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