I must give credit to Asobi no Ikuyo for sticking to its guns. This show has the ability for groan-inducing humor, and some of the best fanservice of any series out there. The lack of pretense is what sells it for me – it’s a series that’s very happy to be what it is. That doesn’t mean it can’t be smart when it wants to – some of the parody humor (“Bewitched” this week) especially involving the assistdroids is highly clever. But mostly it’s sex, otaku jokes and inexplicable plot developments with no explanation whatsoever.
We met a few new characters this week. Akane and Mikoto are the two girl members of Kio’s film club. They’re smokin’, natch, and in a rather hilarious scene they explain how Kio is a girl magnet because he’s “kind, gentle and an anime fan”. If that isn’t parody, I’ve never seen it. We also meet Ichika, a mysterious chibi girl who seems to know a lot about what’s happening between the Catians and Dogisians. And our billionaire loli from the Cat’s Paw worshipers joins Kio’s school as a transfer student, along with her heavily armed maids and Eris. As for the obligatory beach episode portion of the festivities, my favorite moment there was when Akana and Mikoto discovered the “tail holes” in Eris’ hand-me-down swimsuits – one of which Mikoto was wearing backwards. No wonder the boys almost passed out from blood loss.
The romance side of things here is interesting, because the material does a good job of making a strong case for all three major contenders. While in the end I expect no resolution of this storyline, if there is one I could realistically see it going any of the three possible directions. We see an awful lot of the romance from Manami’s POV, which leads me to believe she’s the front-runner – but Aoi has received a lot of romantic development, and Kio seems to have strong feelings for Eris – who also scores points for giving up her first mating season because she couldn’t be with him.