Kure-nai – OVA 2

This is the second OVA release for Kure-nai, a special treat for readers of the manga (of which I am not one), bundled with the last two volume releases. And I liked it quite a bit more than the first one.

The tone of these OVAs is quite a bit different than the TV series, which I was quite a fan of despite it’s meandering finish. The anime was much darker than the OVAs, with a clear and well-defined plot that ran through it start to finish. Manga readers tell us that the OVAs capture the tone of much of the printed version, in which most of the chapters are in a light-hearted style. In any case, I’m a huge fan of the characters and most of that charm came through in the second OVA.

Things still revolve around teen “mediator” Shinkrou Kurenai and his little charge Murasaki, the preternaturally mature loli he saved from a terrible fate at the hands of her wealthy family. But most of the laughs come from the wacky harem that’s formed around Shinkorou – his boss and protector Benika, childhood friend and hacker Ginko, former housemate and sparring partner Yunno, and wacky,saucy neighbors Yamie and Tamaki. Murasaki’s bodyguard Lin is along for the ride, largely in the role of Shinkrou’s tormentor.

There are three short stories in this 30-minute special. The first involves 14 year-old assassin Kirihiko, who Shinkurou saved in one of his assignments. The last involves Murasaki acting as a sort of guidance counselor to the harem, with the ultimate aim of securing Shinkurou all to herself. By far the most successful is the second story, “Treasure”. Shinkurou’s appalling living conditions are the driver of things here – Benika seems to enjoy keeping him under her thumb by keeping him desperately poor – and they were a running gag in the anime as well. Here an attempt to fix a leak leads to discovery of a “man’s treasure” under the sink, and wild speculation among the girls about whether it belongs to Shinkurou or not. Things get pretty hilarious here, especially when Yamie and Tamaki try and turn Shinkurou on so he’ll feel the need to use his treasure later that night. Turns out his treasure is something completely different, though misunderstandings flower and Murasaki – as always precocious and innocent at the same time – give Shinkurou a new treasure to cherish. That treasure is sure to feed the suspicion among the others that he’s a lolicon, but he isn’t – the poor boy isn’t even a pervert, but he can’t seem to catch a break.

I would say these OVAs are probably going to be more enjoyable to someone who has seen the series and gotten hooked by the irresistible charms of the characters. While the OVAs actually share more with the manga than the TV, if you haven’t seen the series or read the manga I suspect you’ll wander what the fuss is about.

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