Amagami SS – 20

I give Amagami points for originality with the Rihoko arc, if nothing else. It was a romance with no romance. It wasn’t so much an anti-climax as a non-event.

That was a curious choice, devoting four episodes to a relationship with no romantic advancement (and no chemistry). As part of something larger it would make some sense – but as part of a romance series, especially an omnibus format, it’s baffling. At least the arc was consistent – a sexual encounter at the end would have been completely out of character with the rest of the arc. Really, in the end, this should have been called the “Tea Club Arc”. I hope you cared about the future of the tea club, because if you’re like me, you just spent 88 minutes watching episodes obsessed with it.

In a way, it’s too bad – Rihoko is likable enough and Junichi wasn’t obnoxious or anything. But there was just no there there. I don’t really know anything about Tsukasa, the subject of the last arc, but given that she’s been given that slot I can only assume she’s a strong contender and that some real sexual tension is going to exist between her and Junichi. For my money, this series peaked with the first arc (especially the third ep) and has never reached that level since.

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