Thursday, June 11, 2009

State of Harem



As much as I like ground breaking and thought provoking titles, I find myself yearning for a breath of the nonsensical. The lovely harem. I again want to be taken to an environment where a dozen or so girls are surrounded by this lucky sucker (who thinks he is unlucky), all while he is trying to cram for some entrance exams. Everybody has a harem series as one of their guilty favorites and it's just an unfortunate situation that these types of shows are becoming a rarity.

Almost any anime fan who is asked about harem will undoubtedly single out Love Hina, The Tenchi franchise, Ouran High School Host Club, and in some cases Ah! My Goddess as the best of the bunch. Can we name anymore? Any good ones? After 2007?

It doesn't seem like an entirely hard formula in its incubation, and as long as there are cute girls and a funny atmosphere, it will create it's own niche in the anime community. Some people just want to laugh at the absurd. After someone watches End of Eva, or Elfen Lied, the best medicine afterward is a good ol' fashion harem!

Where are you?!

It makes me want to assume that the term itself is really just being fizzled out and shuffled into another layer of romantic comedy. Unfortunately, harems have their problems just like any other genre. There are usually a plethora of insignificant characters and as a fan of a particular series, your favorite character may get 30 minutes of screen time...for the entire show. There is also a "hit or miss" situation with the male lead. In my early stages of anime watching, I found myself routing for Tenchi. More often than not though, I got to the point that I wished he'd be castrated for being so indecisive. In an awkward way that made the series more interesting! The viewer is hoping that the protagonist fails!

In all seriousness we do need more harems, and there are some really good ones. A decent one is made every year but it is not enough. We are getting our mech fix, slice of life fix, and FINALLY our Haruhi fix. We deserve a well-made harem. We need a chance again to laugh at the absurd.