Majimoji Rurumo is further evidence of one of the my long-standing dictums of anime, which is that pedigree usually wins out. Quality simply has a way of making itself noticed, a pattern we see repeating itself over and over. Watanabe Wataru is a very good mangaka, and the essence of his talent shines through even in what seems to be a relatively unambitious and formulaic ecchi comedy.
For me, that talent is heart. Quite simply, the essential goodness of Watanabe shines through in his characters, and it’s the likability factor of Kouta and Rurumo that really drives the experience of Majimoji Rurumo just as it’s the likability of the Sohoku Six that drives Yowamushi Pedal. That’s not all there is here, though – there’s an innocent and unpretentious quality to the series that makes it seem more genuine and genuinely funny than most of the self-aware school comedies that dot the schedule these days. And having Shimono Hiro is one of his consummate Shimono Hiro baka ecchi friend roles (as Nishino) only strengthens the impression that this series could have aired as easily ten or twenty years ago as it does today.
Another new character added to the mix this week is Kujirai Tanako (Endou Yurika) a girl who’s had her eye on Kouta despite his reputation (or possibly the President of the Occult Club) and who tries to take on Rurumo in a mahou shoujo battle. This is a bit problematical since she’s a completely bogus magical girl and apparently totally lacking in sense as well, forcing Kouta to burn another ticket saving her from herself (interestingly, Rurumo is able to win the battle easily without using magic, only cleverness). The bulk of the episode, however, is taken up with Rurumo’s hapless attempts to work at the school cafeteria, fulfilling a self-imposed restriction she’s placed on herself that she must be working at all times. It further cements the impression that Kouta has firmly embraced the role of her protector – almost as if he really is her big brother.
There’s a lot to like here (not least the unmistakable Noto Mamiko as Kouta’s yandere mom) even if there’s no one element of Majimoji Rurumo that stands out as exceptional. It’s just a solidly entertaining, good-hearted old-school ecchi comedy with a healthy dose of magic and it doesn’t present itself as anything more than that. Nor does it need to – I like Majimoji Rurumo just fine as is.