This number is your one chance to save yourself from the disasterphe that is the Oreimo ending. Once you reach this point in the final episode of the OVAs, stop the playback and end it right there. So long as you do, it provides a perfectly solid conclusion to the series with no cop outs or asspulls, and the rest of the story can easily be left to your imagination. If you are a glutton for punishment however, proceed at your own risk. Know that what you see cannot be unseen though. Trust me on this one, take the blue pill and
stay in wonderland Neo. You don't want to know how far down the rabbit hole goes in this case. I'll take you out for a juicy and delicious steak instead.
I originally was planning on writing a review for the entire series, but upon completing this crime against humanity, that idea was quickly jettisoned out the airlock like a refrigerator aboard the Bebop. I consider myself fairly lenient when it comes to entertainment that pisses me off, as I can usually see at least some redeeming qualities about it to overlook its flaws and misgivings, but what Oreimo did was such a travesty, so anger, much shitty, wow... Erhmm, what I mean to say is, this is basically the worst ending to a series I've ever seen; beating out Berserk in maximum trollage of its fanbase. There is simply no justifiable explanation for what it did. It is the one cop out ending to rule them all. Thus, out of sheer anger and resentment, I feel compelled to write this very specifically targeted review in the off-chance that I might spare even one other poor soul from being sucked into the empty void that is the experience you will feel in the aftermath of Oreimo.
As this is a sequel to an anime entitled "My Little Sister Can't Be This Cute", by now everyone who has made it this far should be well aware of the incest undertones that are pervasive throughout the series. For some this has been off-putting, but they've managed to stomach it because of the interesting relationships and situations that have developed, or perhaps because it is animated and therefore not real, they don't see it as a problem. In my case, I've never had any problem with it. In fact, I actually rather liked this aspect about the anime. Much like the series' focus on otaku culture, it allows viewers to see how a social taboo could be painted in a positive light, but instead of just preaching to the choir by only focusing on otakus, the author also gets us to consider other socially unacceptable conduct and whether we should be quick to judge others when suddenly confronted with another behavior that we might not understand. With all this in mind, much of what you will see in this sequel finale should really come as no surprise for the most part, as the series continues to deliver exactly what it bills itself as.
I wanted to preface myself with all this so as to not be misconstrued as hating on this anime because of moral objections or because I just didn't get my favorite waifu pairing. To be honest, regardless of who Kyosuke decided to pick in the end, I would have been mostly satisfied so long as the execution was handled well enough. While I do have my personal preferences, at this point I had grown attachments to all of Kyosuke's major love interests, so I could have easily seen the story going many different directions. But the problem is that it wasn't executed well enough. It was executed abysmally. Actually, I take that back. The narrative did a pretty good job with its execution I guess. By dropping a guillotine on itself in its final moments.
What's so baffling about this whole debacle is that the vast majority of the content in these OVAs was in fact handled masterfully. Unlike so many other nameless harems, the main character isn't a clueless dunce that is just going to string his love interests along indefinitely; he had actually chosen who he wanted to be with, and he was prepared to suffer the consequences and fallout that would inevitably come of it. Therefore, this finale largely consists of Kyosuke confronting each girl of his harem and turning them down until he is eventually left with the only one he truly wants. As a result, we are given a dramatic and satisfying display of emotions from all the characters that, even though it was often heart-wrenching to watch, it tugged at my insides in all the right ways, and it was building up proper closure to the series. For this, I was preparing myself to give the OVAs the highest rating of the entire franchise, as it was shaping up to be the most fulfilling arc of them all. Then, inexplicably, with a single whisper in the ear, the story completely derailed itself and threw away everything it was building up to. All of Kyosuke's efforts and sacrifices up until this point were rendered effectively pointless, and absolutely nothing was accomplished by the end of the series.
To explain precisely how everything I just described is possible would be to spoil the story, and I'd like to keep this segment of the review spoiler-free until I get to my final footnotes, but if you really must know why it is so broken, the best way I can describe it to you in vague terms is that this is the Mass Effect 3 ending of anime. Huge breaches in logic, no closure, no resolution, no nothing. In fact, the scale of the cop out was so great that with the way Oreimo ended, viewers could start watching a theoretical third season of it having no foreknowledge of any of the events that transpired in the OVAs, and they wouldn't even notice that they had missed anything of substance. Despite a series of what should have been life-altering decisions, drama-packed confessions, and heart-breaking rejections, none of it actually amounted to anything and the anime was practically right back to square one where it started in the first season. Everyone has varying tastes when it comes to storytelling, but I think it's fair to say that no one would want an ending that is virtually identical to its beginning.
I could talk about the voice actors, which were great at their roles. I could talk about the animation, which was fluid and lives up to the quality of the rest of the series, but all of this doesn't matter. The ending was just so broken and so forced that nothing else could save it. In spite of all this, my leniency still managed to squeeze 3 points out of 10 from me because there was so much else that the OVAs got right, but it's still bad. Really bad. This is the first time where such a small segment of the narrative has so greatly affected my score simply because it is that atrocious. When all is said and done, we are left with a conclusion that emotionally manipulates its viewers and then kicks them all violently to the curb. It's particularly more nefarious than most because other cop out endings are usually done due to their source material being incomplete, but Oreimo doesn't have this excuse. The light novels are finished, and this was the official ending that was chosen, which means there is likely no planned continuation that gives a proper resolution to the story, and there is nothing to look forward to in its source material to provide any solace. Still, for an anime to be capable of eliciting this much emotion out of me, there obviously has to be something special there. And there is. Oreimo is still overall a good series and it was a fun ride while it lasted, but the ending will break you, so I repeat: 21 minutes, 12 seconds. Save yourself and do not forget this number.
***** SPOILERIFIC FOOTNOTES *****
Now if by some chance you didn't listen to my advice and foolishly stumbled ahead anyway, I'd just like to say right now that I told you so. Anyways, it's time to take the safety gloves off and make some final points that I couldn't touch on in my spoiler-free section of the review. So as we all know (since you didn't listen to my advice), Kyosuke chose his sister Kirino, but we find out later that the secret words Kirino whispered in Kyosuke's ear were a suggestion for them to end their relationship after they graduate, and perplexingly Kyosuke agrees as if this is actually a great idea. She doesn't really give an explanation for this proposition, which is what makes it all the more confusing that Kyosuke would accept it right away, but presumably the implication is that because this is an incest relationship, they must have believed it could never work out in the end due to society rejecting them, so this was the only way they thought they could go forward. Well that's all fine and dandy, except then WHAT THE HELL WAS THE POINT OF ALL THAT SACRIFICE? So the writers expect us to believe that even though Kirino's selfishness would never allow this, and even though Kyosuke already told everyone his true feelings and turned down several confessions that could have easily resulted in life-long fulfilling relationships, they would both cast all this aside just so they could have an intimate relationship for a few weeks? There is absolutely no way this would realistically happen, and it is completely inconsistent with the characters' motivations. Granted, Oreimo has hardly been a realistic series, but even relative to its own rules that it establishes for itself, it just doesn't work.
Given this sudden and massive breach of common sense, it seems rather obvious that it was the writers' intent to cheaply avoid controversy while still trying to have their cake and eat it too. However, even putting aside the huge inconsistencies this creates with the characters just so they could have this contrived ending, how does this even truly evade the moral outrage that they sought to tap dance around? I don't know if anyone noticed, but Kirino and Kyosuke already confessed to each other! They already slept together! They already held a wedding and kissed each other! For anyone who strongly objects to incest at this point, the line has already been thoroughly crossed, but instead they think they can still just back up their car and no one will notice that the finish line was passed. And that's the most frustrating thing about this all. The anime had already reached the perfect place to finish, but it just kept on going. Going backwards that is, and yet if it had simply ended where it was supposed to, it was already set for greatness.
If you don't have the balls to fully commit to your incestuous ending, then at least have the decency to not completely screw your main character over and make him choose someone else. Otherwise this is just insulting and it doesn't satisfy anyone. It doesn't appease Kirino fans, it doesn't appease Kuroneko fans, it doesn't appease Manami fans, it doesn't even appease the moral prudes that object to the incestuous undertones which is the whole reason for the asspull ending in the first place, so again I ask, what was the point? Now because of the way the producers chose to chickenshit out at the last minute, not only does it leave the conclusion completely unfulfilling, but it also ruins one of the biggest messages that was emphasized throughout the series. Kirino was always struggling to reconcile her true feelings with the clashing values of the society that will judge her for holding them, and in the end she always decided that it was more important to be herself and not give up who she truly is, yet I guess in this case the message is, "Just kidding, go back to repressing your true feelings because now they're suddenly a bridge too far." What a fantastically hypocritical pile of bile. Screw you dickless, ball-less producers at ASCII Media Works that are likely responsible for this sleight of hand from the mangaka.
It's impressive how a series can manage to alienate every part of its fanbase in just over one hour.
THIS REVIEW CONTAINS HEAVY SPOILERS.
Let me be clear: this is simply my opinion on the ending and not the series as a whole. Perhaps I will get around to that someday. I would be rating the series as a whole much differently. In any case, if you are reading this review I expect you have watched the first two seasons by now, so take that into account. Because it is just a trio of episodes/OVAs making up the ending, I won't bother making sections for each
While I generally don't like harems, I was able to sit through the first two seasons of OreImo without complaint. My main complaints about harems are their 1-dimensional girls and pathetically dense and oblivious MC. OreImo was able to deliver likable characters, and while they were by no means deep, they at least broke away from the stereotypes a tiny bit. The center of the harem, Kyousuke, was less dense and oblivious than the average MC, and while that isn't saying much, he was always relatively competent in his decision making skills. You should know all the girls by know, and their relationships with him. But which will he choose? With a title like "My Little Sister Can't Be This Cute", it should only take one guess.
This trio begins with Kyousuke figuratively picking off of the members of his harem one by one like a hitman (with the exception of Ayase, who was dealt with previously, and Saori who was barely an option in the anime adaptation at all). He seemingly breaks up with Kuroneko/Ruri again (didn't this happen before?) which leads to a lot of crying and drama which heavily contrasted the first time. He gets a laughable confession from Kanako, whose character had essentially no screentime in the anime adaptation, which makes the scene even more absurd for those not aware of the other source material.
After a Christmas Eve date, he finally declares his love for Kirino, who eventually accepts his confession. They decide to become lovers, and Kirino whispers something in her brother's ear which the viewer cannot hear.
After they start out their "romantic life", the story climaxes when Manami, who had made it her mission to prevent this from happening for years, appears in the park. She confronts the pair and the viewer is treated to a cat fight between Manami and Kirino, ending with Manami giving up her love for Kyousuke and leaving the park after a last minute morality lecture.
Afterwards, they get married (figuratively, but with clothing and church to match). They share a kiss. And then the credits roll.
Kirino had whispered in Kyousuke's ear that they would only keep up their lover's life until they graduated. With that done, they agree to go back to being normal siblings.
In the end, Kyousuke burned his bridges with every girl in his harem to be with his sister for a matter of weeks. Some say the author was pressured into leaving an open ending like this, that a full-on Kirino end was the desired outcome, but that doesn't really excuse it. After two seasons of build up and "character development", the viewer is left with an ending where no one wins. I suppose Kirino got closest, since they shared a kiss after all, but their relationship burned out very quickly. Everything returns exactly to the way it was as the ED plays, in an almost Groundhog Day like ending. It was one of the most contrived, rushed, and idiotic ends to an anime I have seen, and it will leave a long lasting bitter taste in my mouth after two solid seasons.
Dear studios: please never do this again. Stories need some sort of resolution.
Well, it's been a fun little ride. I mean, a ride with an otaku/tsundere/little-sister fetish obsessed sister and her average brother. From what we've seen over 3 years ago in 2010, Oreimo made a smash debut when it opened its doors to the 2D world for viewers. But hey, all things has to come to an end right? Well, the ride is finally over because these OVA episodes concludes the light novels. However, what I got from these OVA episodes were a combination of rage, mixed, and also some emotional feelings.
For one thing, these OVA episodes concludes the light novels. What this means is that
it adapts the final volume 12 and give viewers a conclusion; aka no cliffhanger situation. Now, the OVA episodes itself directly expands on the season 2 of Oreimo. This implies that you have finished watching the previous episodes to reach this ending. From what we have witnessed in the past of Oreimo, the concept of dating 2D boys/girls have been explored like never before. But what if that transits into the real world? What if it now involves 3D characters?
As for starters, most of the main characters (girls) makes their debut. In particular, Kyousuke has to make some difficult decisions to respond to these characters' thoughts and feelings. For one thing, Kyousuke has obviously made his mind and the majority of the girls get a direct response in a brutally honest way. However, there is one winner to this whole game – a 3D game. For Kyousuke, this feeling has already been developing possibly from the very beginning. It is from these feelings that Kyousuke breaks through his walls that held him back.
Judging straight forward, these OVA episodes shows that the girls who has made connections with Kyousuke all seems to want one thing – an answer. (some hoping to get what they want) Although it's a bit obvious, the girls gets their answers. For viewers though, this might be met with different responses and expectations. This is especially true especially if you wanted that one particular character to end up with Kyousuke. However, like I mentioned before, there could only be one and only one winner. Unlike the 2D game, everything is reality and Kyousuke is the main player. (not literally a 'player' though cause that would imply a different meaning)
The series' supporting cast also brings forth the drama as like viewers, some of their responses can be more dramatic or emotional. Ever heard of the thought of 'going out with a bang?' Well, that concept applies here because these OVA episodes are the girls' final chance to make their screen appearances. And really, two particular girls literally makes their exit entrances with some drama. At the same time, there's emotions coming forth. After all, not everything in life goes the way an individual wants. Sometimes, you can't get it together.
There are some parodies again as well that reflects on the otaku culture relating to the 2D world. As evidenced, the concept of cos-playing, BL (Boys Love) obsessions, and making fun of magical girl series still make their little cameos here. Jokes aside, the OVA episodes surprisingly has minimal fan service. As most OVA episodes seems to incorporates the usage of beach cliches or onsen trips, Oreimo actually avoids this at the last moment. However, do expect a little mishap from Kyousuke. He's the average dude of the show and he tends to make mistakes like the average Joe.
Artwork and soundtrack remains consistent throughout these OVA episodes. Kuroneko still has her cosplay get up on in her stylish fashion. More noticeably however is Kirino as she puts on quite a fabulous look in the finale. Aniplex is known for some of its high production values in its previous works such as Fate/Zero and Guilty Crown. In these OVA episodes, I can be grateful enough to see the artwork done right. Then, there's the background sound scores with its light tones. In particular climatic scenes, there's a sudden hit in the tone. The OP/ED songs also gives off a familiar tone with its girly style. However, if we talk about voice acting, I give praise to both Kana Hanazawa (Kuroneko) and Ayana Taketatsu (Kirino). For one thing, the both of them were able to carry out their roles of their characters despite the contrasting responses they've received.
Ultimately, this series was a twisted ride. It might not be the most fun ride, but it did had its ups and downs. For me though, it was a ride worthy of a score of '6'. I'd love to flip that number opposite down but the way it was executed makes me think otherwise. For faithful followers of the Oreimo franchise though, this should be a must-see because it definitely does conclude in a way that doesn't leave viewers hanging. What these OVA episodes might leave however are either joy, rage, or mixed reactions. I'm not here to make the judgement for you because that's ultimately a choice you have to decide on whether you enjoyed this or not. There are choices after all just like the 2D world.
By that I mean all those little, but important, things that the producer (A1-Pictures) decided to leave out from the source material (i.e. the light novel, LN) and the half-assed animation during small segments throughout the special OVA series. Many casual viewers will likely be confused with the ending because of those missing little details from the LN. Don’t get me wrong, I loved the entire series. But as a show with global recognition, I expected more efforts from the anime staff to make this (the specials) a standalone masterpiece depicting the hardship and challenges our
protagonists have to face in their relationship. Instead, all we get is a water-downed version of the LN with many crucial scenes butchered. Objectively speaking, as a whole for the oreimo story, the theme was well explored and putting aside all those character favouritism talk, I feel the author has achieved his goal of what he wanted to portray as one of the taboo in our narrow minded society.
Love is love. Whether you like someone 10, 20, 30 years younger/older than you, or whether you like someone with a different ethnicity, or whether you like someone with a distinctive connection to yourself, there is no right or wrong to that. Fans were presented with many possible “ships” to cheer from since the start. But ultimately all good things must come to an end and someone should be crowned the winner and this is where the special OVA comes in. It wraps up the entire oreimo universe, covering (most of) the final volume of the LN. So don’t expect another season as there won’t be any.
Like us, the viewers, the girls in the show all want to know what Kyousuke is thinking, or more specifically who he claims to like so much that he even rejected one of the most fabulous yandere in recent anime history! There were scene of agony, scene of sadness, scene of brutal cat-fight, scene full of heartbreaking moments, and scene full of love. This OVA answered all the questions the fans wanted to know (albeit quite a few seems to be upset about it).
A1-Pictures, while horribly butchered certain minor plots from the final volume of the LN, they did so in favour of bringing back to the viewers some of the long missed otaku culture which this story originated from. Fans from the first season will be happy and feel refreshed to see it I am sure! With respect to the other evaluation aspects of the show, namely animation and sound, all there is to say so far (since BD not out for the special OVA) is that it is consistent with the previous works. There is no new OP though which might disappoint some fans.
Ultimately it has been a fun ride for me, both in terms of the anime and the LN. I would certainly recommend the LN to all fans who want to learn more about the characters simply because the anime was not adapted that well IMHO. In the end, regardless of who you may have shipped with our average, good-for-nothing onii-san, I hope we can view the anime objectively without being blinded by all the favouritism of the character we root for because the story itself, especially the theme behind it, is unique and certainly ain’t one you see very often in today’s anime industry where everything is moe or ecchi driven.
With the conclusion contained in this 3 episode special the OreImo series can be best described as a series that got progressively worse with each new release. The first season was very good, the second one was already lackluster and this... I have no idea what this is meant to be. The story is a directionless train-wreck, the characters are completely ruined (every last one of them) and the ending has the ability to induce anger even in the most docile of individuals.
Now let's have a look at all of this in detail. Some SPOILERS will be involved.
First off the story. So you've
followed the anime or the light novel up to this point and know what's coming. Indeed the Kirino route is what the makers decided would be best to end this anime on. But hang on - in this 3 episode special you'll first have to wade through a field of absolutely awful, outlandish harem confessions in order to get to the ending. The dialogue is superbly superficial and while the characters scream/cry/slap each other during the vital parts of this special it just doesn't feel real because it's rushed and largely shallow. I actually laughed during those scenes, which is not something the makers were aiming for I'm sure.
The characters themselves are slaughtered mercilessly. Most of the female characters that possessed substance and depth were reduced to Confession girl no. 1, confession girl no. 2, confession girl no. 3 etc. A good example of that would be Manami. What in the world have they done with her? They've turned her into some sadistic villain that was plotting to destroy Kyosuke and Kirino's relationship all along. Moreover, we see her fighting. Real proper bare knuckle fighting! And if you think that's bad wait until you find out who drew first blood. I felt like I was watching DBZ for a moment there. And all of this from the most rational, docile and friendly character in the series. Just so out of place. Everything you knew about her from the 1st season is shattered in a matter of minutes. Likewise, nearly every character you liked will be ruined before the end with some complete outlandish plot point, which just makes you dislike the series as a whole.
Kyousuke was also ruined for a number of reasons. He seemed like a rational type in the first season, not so much in the second. In here he goes full retard mode. He turned down a grand total of 4 confessions + 1 more possible romantic development, risked a conflict with his parents and his friends for his sister. He does this without much thought. What further baffles me is that he was very prudent in the first season - always thoughtful of his future. He even discussed it with Manami when he was at her house in one of the episodes of the first season. In here, he has no idea what he's doing. He's thrown about like a leaf in the wind and his most rational explanation for this is that he does this because he's in "love" with (read: likes being the slave of) his sister.
And this brings me to the ending and it also brings me full circle to one of the earlier statements I made. The Kirino end isn't actually a true Kirino end. Turns out all he gets is a mock wedding & single kiss and they break up and return to their former status of brother and sister. In other words no conclusion, no resolution - the story is left open and you're left with a feeling of rage so intense you could go 12 rounds with a mutated alligator.
The only redeeming qualities here are art and sound which, as in the previous 2 seasons have stayed nearly perfect. But no matter how good those two components are, if the story and characters absolutely fail to deliver... well anything then it is obvious that the anime in question will end up with a low mark nonetheless.
All things considered, this ending is a total failure and I'll pretend that the OreImo series ends with the first season.
A lot of people were very disappointed at the ending of Oreimo. While it was hardly unpredictable, it seems many wanted a full incest ending. I certainly wouldn’t have minded myself, but I think it is dangerous to allow personal feelings to get in the way of appreciating the value of the story.
Now as an anime, I’m willing to admit that Oreimo had its flaws. Several, annoying, even fatal flaws. As you know by now, Oreimo is a harem, and a particularly stereotypical one at that. The incredibly dense protagonist is surrounded by shallow, barely characterized girls who fall heels
over head for him for inexplicable reasons like “He’s nice to everyone.” At some points I wondered if Kyouske even had male friends. These girls generally have unoriginal, single-faceted personalities and the Tsundere has, big surprise, a massive advantage. Oreimo clings to its harem roots until the bitter end, including a completely unnecessary confession from a side character.
Furthermore, as with the rest of the show, the comedy in these OVAs is pretty hit-and-miss. The animation and the sound track are acceptable but nothing to write home about. And the plot, while definitely a step up from the rest of the series, is most certainly no Brothers Karamazov. The ending, without spoiling too much, goes halfway but can’t quite work up the courage to give everyone what they really wanted.
Now that I’ve said all that, you may be wondering why in God’s name I gave this show an 8.
Taken just as an anime, Oreimo is decent but not great, and the OVAs are just a big let-down. But anime fans know that anime is art; and I argue more specifically that anime is literature. If we suspend our angry, sex-crazed otaku mode, we can look at the literary value of anime. Viewing Oreimo not as anime, but as a work of literature, we can find some worth in the story; and yes, especially in the ending that angered so many people.
While hardly a ground-shaking work that turns a critical eye to the very fabric of society, Oreimo does manage to ask some interesting questions through its story. The first being “What is wrong, really?” examined through the motif of incest. The origins of our attitudes on incest are fairly clear. Although it has certainly been happening for thousands of years, it leads to a weaker genetic stock which is an evolutionary disadvantage. But in the modern world, the survival of our species is no longer at stake; there is also evidence that single instances of inbreeding are not dangerous unless they are repeated or the individual's families have a history of genetic illness. However we have taken such a distaste to incest that even expressions of romantic love are taboo between siblings.
I would hate for this review to be taken as an argument that incest is acceptable. The point I am trying to make is that society disapproves of incest, but the reason for this disapproval is now less clear than it was for most of history. If you asked a typical person why incest is wrong, you would probably get a partially scientific answer, a bible verse or an answer like “it just is.”
Oreimo is definitely not the first work or even the first anime to use incest as a plot device. However, most of them are either fetish material, or come down pretty hard on one side of the issue. However, Oreimo manages to take a slightly more complex look at the subject. Without giving Oreimo too much credit (it doesn’t go into the science and history of incest), it does ask some questions about our attitudes: “Is it really anybody else’s business?” “If some people approve, does that make it any better?” “Does it really hurt anyone else?” “If they really love each other, is it somehow then acceptable?” Oreimo manages to show the restraint to not answer these questions with one unified voice. Focusing more on the question than the answer is one of the things that distinguishes good literature from propaganda. Our modern attitudes value “true love” as “right” and incest as “wrong;” when Oreimo juxtaposes the two, which opinion wins? And more importantly, why?
There is also a secondary question. It is less important so I considered not talking about it at all, but it has some value I think. “How much of our attitudes are really our own?” We all know we are heavily influenced by our environment and especially other people. If you don’t believe me, look at your views on religion and politics compared to your parents’. Unless you’re being rebellious, I would wager there is a good chance they are very similar. Looking at Kyouske’s love that he develops for Kirino, how much of it is really his? Or did Kirino convince Kyouske that he loved her?
Kyouske is surrounded by influences that probably shaped his feelings to some extent. His friends, for the most part, accept the relationship with Kirino; with Kuroneko even explicitly stating her assent. He is often with Kirino who has romantic feelings for him. She also gets him to play siscon eroge. This question of outside influence on our person is even unambiguously stated in the OVAs. Manami comes right out and asks Kyouske if he can really deny that he was influenced by these games. The anime is again less than completely clear on how much of Kyouske’s feelings are genuinely his own.
Oreimo is not a work of literary genius. Most of the show is a mindless harem with some pleasing comedy and slice-of-life. This ending gets a lot of heat, and I can understand why it was so unpopular. But if you dig a little past the clichés, there is a certain amount of intelligent value, if you’re willing to look for it.
The last 5 minutes of the final episode makes the entire rest of the series a pointless waste of time... so if you plan on watching this, just close your media player RIGHT AFTER the kiss that occurs during the final episode.
It's not possible to give a score lower than 1, but if there were a way to do it, then I would.
I would be lying if I said I didn't enjoy this at all, but a 1 still counts as a mere speck of enjoyment right?
It's like going on a good roller coaster ride. It's
a really good ride until it takes you through a tunnel. Unbeknownst to you, the tunnel is filled with concrete. You're cruising through the tunnel and then WHAM!
That's almost a completely accurate representation of what the last few minutes of this show were like. The only reason it isn't completely accurate is because you'd be dead if you went on that roller coaster, whereas this show leaves you alive and suffering.
The girls are cute. Not much else to say.
Music wasn't anything special. Voice actors (Japanese ones) did a good job I guess.
There was character development throughout the series, and there was some development in these OVA's too... before the plummet that occurred in the last few minutes that is. Basically, Kyousuke and Kirino are back to square one as far as development goes, but they might have a little more respect/affection for eachother. That's it. That's all you get for sitting through two seasons.
There really is no other way to visualise the plot of these last three episodes other than the metaphorical fist of God flattening everything you once knew about a harem king and his own little world. Whether the ending itself is satisfactory or not is entirely up to you, your expectations and how soon you realised it was inevitable. This does not excuse the incredibly poor execution of the conclusion to a show I wish I could hold in the harem halls of fame.
I will, unlike many, avoid using spoilers in this summary because I believe these episodes should come with a warning label attached
to them. Something like, "Attention human! If you continue down this path you are now aware this plot was rushed and condensed into far too few an episode number due to pressure on the author and writers." Not that it really excuses the poor quality as production could have been held back or simply spanned more episodes, but that was not the desire of the producers. This review will also be short, because there isn't much to comment on that isn't the same as a previous series or just wild opinions.
Any and all hope of a story is long gone by this point in the show. The only credit that can be given is that we simply have an ending, and not a series of questions that were left over from season 2. Though, if you were expecting to have your questions satisfied, you'd better leave behind any attachment you had to anyone and everything first.
The art was the same quality as the previous season, so of course it gets its usual high calibre score.
Again, similar to the previous season and so high quality.
I will not slate the characters to their deaths here, because they suffer enough in this short span of screen time. Instead, to summarise, no character is left untouched, with the exception of Ayase who was dealt with in the previous season. You will be shocked, and you probably won't like it. Even the incredible performance by Kuroneko is not enough to shield her from the inevitable destruction. You may even get angry when they mess about with Manami. I punched the desk and it hurt, a lot. If you've seen what's coming, at least this will be less painful to you than it has been for some other viewers - one of my friends literally screamed at his monitor upon viewing the aftermath of this tragic resolution.
Whilst I was somewhat shielded from the pain because I saw this coming back in season 1, it did not make this any more comfortable to watch. When you do decide to sit through it, bear with the whole hour in one go and make sure you have some time afterwards to sit and think about it, because it's probably going to be heavy on your mind.
The Final Verdict: 3/10
The whole project became more and more time constrained towards the end of season 2 so it was no surprise that when the three OVAs were released the quality was even worse. Despite all the negative criticism that the OreImo OVAs receive, I would recommend that you watch it to complete the season. It will at least give you a more complete finish, no matter whether you like or dislike it. There are also a few important ideas about the theme of incest that are almost-but-not-quite explored, which may promote some interesting topics to think on. Most importantly, if you can remember the good from the seasons before it, you might just be able to forgive some of the ending and save yourself from buying that new monitor.
The first season of Oreimo was an outstanding comedy anime. The second season was a lackluster sequel that took itself way too seriously, focusing on the harem that surrounds the main character, Kyousuke. The second season still managed to have some really good moments and I enjoyed it enough. These specials wrap up the second season.
This... this is just horrible.
I realize Kyousuke was a siscon, but thats not what bothers me. I can handle incest in various degrees. Though, I did find myself cringing in various scenes because... the romance is just NOT done well. At all. Even between two characters who weren't
related, this would be dreadful. Its writen horribly and nothing that was done could ever possibly make me like the two characters.
I'd get into specifically why I hate Kyousuke AND Kirino, but that would take me all day. I'll sum it up by saying they're both selfish, disgusting, and greedy individuals who honestly deserve each other.
The ending to this was a complete joke. I can't even comment on it because I'm astounded by how much of a cop-out it was. Only made me hate both characters more.
The art and animation were good, as usual. The soundtrack was good. Everything else? No. If you're looking for an even somewhat satisfying ending to this series, just don't even bother.
PS- I know this is the ending to the light novels. I knew it wasn't going to be exactly what I wanted, but I expected something at least halfway decent.
A lot of people are complaining about the ending to a fantastic series. I'm here hoping to get my point across.
People are saying the ending is rage-worthy, some even call it "bad." But these are people reviewing on a personal/emotional level. Critically, the ending was logical, and dare I say it, perfect.
Now, was I happy with the ending? Absolutely not. It's one of those "Why would you do that!?" moments. And being a fairly new anime watcher, this was a first for me. In my opinion, the ending was great, including the part that everyone has been complaining about. As I said before though, an
un-biased opinion would (probably) say this ending was the only way to go with it. Even still, it tore me up emotionally, to a point where some tears were shed. That's why I give the series a 10, and the ending a 9. If a show can make you feel that much emotion, why shouldn't it be up there?
The USS Writer was a formidable submarine, whose torpedoes have the capability to sink any ship. It has been deployed numerous times, and has survived all of it encounters. It sinks ships at any place and time; it sinks anything, from small vessels to large fleets; and, it fears nothing. Currently, it has only one objective: To Eliminate Four Ships Floating in the Pacific Ocean. Its captain, Hideyuki Kurata, was at the helm.
“Captain,” the First Officer said. “We have spotted the first target. It’s the 'Ayase X Kyousuke’ Ship! Distance: 8,500 yards. Speed: 24 knots. Bearing: zero-four-five.”
The Captain, standing
in the control room, nodded and announced on the intercom, “Men to the torpedo room. Load up and prepare to engage."
The Captain stared at his sheet, which titled ‘Ships for Elimination’ and underneath the heading, listed the ships and reasons for its destruction. He read the first target’s reason:
– Target: ‘Ayase X Kyousuke’ Ship.
– Reason: Ayase confessed her love for him, outside his apartment. Kyousuke acknowledges her feelings, but declines and states that he’s in love with someone else. Ayase cries a little, but instead of hurting him, she kisses him and bids farewell.
“This pairing was not meant to be,” the Captain yelled on the intercom. “Fire torpedo 1!"
The torpedomen replied, “firing torpedo” and hit the switch and the torpedo was launched. The torpedo propelled itself towards the sailing vessel; it made contact and exploded, creating an enormous hole on its side. It began to take in water and, slowly, the ship capsized. It sunk to the bottom of the ocean.
“Success! Find the next target, “ shouted the Captain.
“Yes, Captain,” replied the First Officer.
[A few days later.]
The USS Writer was cruising at a steady 23 knots, when the radar system detected two large ‘pings’. The navigator noticed the ‘pings’ and informed the First Officer. Being wary, he walked to the periscope and looked into it. He turned the periscope in the direction of the ‘pings’ and spotted two large ships beyond the horizon.
“Captain,” the First Officer said. “We have spotted the 'Kanako x Kyousuke’ Ship and 'Manami x Kyousuke’ Ship. First ship; distance: 9,000 yards, speed: 29 knots, bearing: zero-five-one. Second ship; distance 9,200 yards, speed: 28 knots, bearing: zero-five-five.”
The Captain announced to the men to prepare for battle stations. He read the second and third target’s reasons for destruction:
– Target: 'Kanako x Kyousuke’ Ship
– Reason: Kanako confessed her love for him at her concert. Kyousuke acknowledges her feelings, but yells in a loud voice that he has a girlfriend that he loves. She causally brushes it off, and tells him she will become an amazing idol, and that he will one day regret that decision.
– Target: 'Manami x Kyousuke’ Ship
– Reason: Once, Kyousuke graduated from his high school, he and Kirino met Manami in the park. She became extremely angry upon learning about their illicit relationship, and Kirino’s taunting. Kirino and Manami begin fighting each other with fists and slaps to the face. Kyousuke breaks-up the fight and, soon, Manami begins to attack their illicit relationship and mentions the consequences of it. Afterwards, she confesses her love for Kyousuke, but he turns her down and tells her that he will accept all the consequences for being in this relationship. Manami hits him and leaves the park, feeling extremely salty.
“The first pairing was never going to happen; the second pairing…thank god, it never happened,” the Captain yell on the intercom. “Fire torpedo 1! Fire torpedo 2!”
"Firing torpedo 1; firing torpedo 2,” the torpedomen replied.
The switches were hit and the torpedoes were launched. Both torpedoes propelled themselves towards their designated targets. The first torpedo exploded against the steel underside of the ‘Kanako x Kyousuke’ Ship, it quickly began taking in water and, shortly, the vessel split in half. Both parts of the vessel sunk to the bottom of the ocean. The second torpedo exploded against the backside of the ‘Manami x Kyousuke’ Ship, it caused little damage. Then, the ship began to turn, slowly, showing its back towards the submarine.
“Fuck, “the Captain yelled on the intercom. “It’s getting away! Fire torpedo 3! Fire Torpedo 4!"
“Firing torpedo 3; firing torpedo 4,” the torpedomen replied.
The switches were hit and the torpedoes were launched. They propelled swiftly through the rough waters and, soon, was approaching the ship. The first torpedo missed, but the second, managed to explode near the ammunition magazines, causing a massive explosion. Tiny pieces of metal, glass, and wood flew up into the air. Fire and smoke rose to the cloudy skies and, shortly, another explosion occurred, sending more pieces of the vessel into the air. Large parts of the vessel sunk to the bottom of the ocean, while tiny wooden boards and glass stayed afloat.
“Excellent job! Out of all the ships on this list, I hated this ship the most! And If given the chance, I would destroy that ship again with no hesitation,” the Captain said. “Let’s find the final target.”
“Yes, Captain,” said the First Officer.
[Two Weeks Later.]
On this particularly day, the night skies were clear and the ocean was relatively calm. The USS Writer was heading towards the pier of a remote island off the coast of Japan, when the First Officer, looking through his binoculars, noticed something in the distance. He focused the lens and saw the 'Kuroneko x Kyousuke’ Ship cruising slowly through the water.
“I know,” replied the Captain. “It’s the final ship, and the one ship that I don’t want to destroy, but orders are orders. Let’s just destroy it and move on. First Officer, give us the distance, speed and bearing on that vessel.”
“Right away, Captain.”
The First Officer descended from the bridge and back into the communication room and looked into the periscope.
He yelled, “Distance: 11,400 yards. Speed: 25 knots. Bearing: zero-six-one!"
“Dammit, we are too far away, “the Captain said. “Tell the engineers to increase the engine speeds and close the gap! Reduce the speed when we are roughly 9,000 yards from the target! Also, tell the torpedomen to load up the torpedoes.”
The First Officer went into the torpedo room and inform the torpedomen to load up the torpedoes. Then, he went into the engine room and informed the engineers to increase the speed. They complied and began adding more fuel into the engines. They roared and the rotors spun with increasing speed and, soon, the submarine was propelling at 35 knots. The ocean waves slammed against its steel hull, sending the pounding noises to fill the air. After a few minutes, the engines were reduced to 25 knots.
“We are roughly 9,000 yards from the target,” yelled the navigator.
The Captain asked, “What’s the new speed and bearing?"
“Speed: 27 knots. Bearing: zero-five-seven,” replied the First Officer.
The Captain stared at his sheet and read the final target’s reason:
– Target: 'Kuroneko x Kyousuke’ Ship
– Reason: Kyousuke and Kuroneko have dated in the past, despite it last only a few months. Kuroneko still loves him, even though they have broken up, she musters up the courage and confesses her love for him on the night before Christmas Eve. Kyousuke turns her down, and she, feeling sad, understands and accepts his response. Afterwards, Kuroneko helps Kyousuke with his confession by playing an embarrassing audio of him, confessing that he loves his sister. Furthermore, she accepts the illicit relationship between Kirino and Kyousuke.
With small tears in his eyes, the Captain said on the intercom, “I can’t believe I’m doing this. Fire torpedo 1. Fire torpedo 2.”
The torpedomen shared the same sentiment and reluctantly hit the switches, launching both torpedoes into the water. They propelled swiftly through the choppy waves and crept up to the large vessel. Both torpedoes exploded upon impact, creating a huge hole on its side and underside. With no explosions, overturns, or splits, the ship took in lots of water and sunk slowly. All the men on the USS Writer viewed in anguish the untimely sinking of their favorite ship.
The Captain rubbed the tears away and said, “Men, our mission is over. It’s time to head back to port. First Officer, tell the navigators to head towards the nearest pier.”
[A Few Hours Later.]
While, en route to the nearest island, the communications men received a sudden transmission from their Commander stationed on the aircraft carrier, USS A-1 Pictures. Informing their Captain, he rushed to the communications room and listened to the Commander’s voice.
The Captain asked, “This is Captain Hideyuki Kurata, speaking. What are your orders, Commander?"
“This is Commander Hiroyuki Kanbe. By my order, your ship, the USS Writer, are tasked to eliminate one final ship. The target is the ‘Kirino x Kyousuke’ Ship. A document, listing the coordinates and reason for its destruction, will be send to you by private email. Good luck, Captain. We look forward to your future report.”
The transmission ended and, immediately, an email was received on his laptop. He noticed that the coordinates were very close to their position; he skimmed the rest of the email, until he read the reason for its destruction. It read:
– Target: ‘Kirino x Kyousuke’ Ship
– Reason: After rejecting Kuroneko, Kyousuke asks Kirino on a Christmas Date. They spent time together and Kirino tells Kyousuke that she thinking about studying abroad, again. Kyousuke doesn’t like that, and with help from Kuroneko and Saori, he yells in a loud voice, “Don’t Go Anywhere! Marry Me!” Kirino accepts the confession and says, “Yes.” Afterwards, they spent time in a hotel room, playing an eroge game. Kyousuke gives Kirino a fake engagement ring and agreed to hold the pseudo-wedding after their graduation. Upon, returning back home, Kirino shows Kyousuke a box full images and past memories. Once, graduation ended, they hold the pseudo-wedding and kiss with genuine feelings. Then, they return to being regular siblings, just as they promised in the hotel room. They promised each other to be a couple, until graduation came, and once it comes, they return to being regular siblings.
“This ship…it was going very strong it was going to win, until…this stupid event happened,” the Captain said. “Men, let’s find this final ship and destroy it.”
The Captain ordered the navigators to enter the coordinates and then told them to head in that direction. The submarine headed in the northeast direction and was propelling at 23 knots. It wasn’t long, until they spotted it with their binoculars; a bright yellow object.
“What the…what is going on?” the First Officer asked.
“They’re celebrating, “ replied the Captain.
“Why are they celebrating? I don’t understand.”
“They’re celebrating because they believe they have won the ‘Shipping War’. All the other ships have been destroyed, and since, they’re the last official ship, they assume that they have won.”
“But, they’re wrong. Because, we have orders to destroy them.”
“They don’t know that,” the Captain said. “That is, until they feel the first explosion from our torpedo, then they will realize that they, too, have lost. But, enough about this, what is the direction, speed, and bearing on that vessel.”
The First Officer went into the communication room and looked into the periscope.
He yelled, “Distance: 8,500 yards. Speed: 0 knots. Bearing: zero-four-eight."
“I see. They are stationary. Are the torpedoes loaded?” asked the Captain.
The First Officer checked on the torpedomen and asked them if the torpedoes were loaded, they said, “Yes. They loaded and ready.” He went back to the bridge and informed the Captain.
“Good. Fire Torpedo 1!”
The torpedomen heard the order and hit the switch, launching the torpedo into the water. The torpedo glided across the calm, night waters and was nearing the unwary ship. Then, a loud explosion was heard, followed by another explosion. Hundreds of tiny pieces of glass, wood, and metal exploded into the air. Fire was spreading across the ship, then it spread to the engine rooms, causing a third explosion. More pieces of the vessel were toss into the air. The ship quickly sunk to the bottom of the ocean, leaving behind a trail of wooden boards, burning flames on water, and small metal parts.
“Men, I declare this mission to be over. The final ship has been destroyed and, with it ends the ‘Shipping Wars’. It would seem that no one won this war. Only destruction and chaos remains in the end. It is time to decommission this submarine, until the next ‘Shipping Wars’ appears. And, to be honest, this is the first ‘Shipping Wars’, that I have participated in, where no one won. And that’s a very frustrating thing to hear or experience.”
(SPOILER FREE!!!!!) Review for the whole series as well.
Love is a risk. What strengthens it is our commitment to risking it all, even if it means complete failure. While those in love may suffer, they stay true to themselves, not allowing others to stop them. That is what OreImo taught me.
It was a fun ride. With every possible way they could have messed up the ending, it went relatively well.
The Story  takes you on a trip through every girl for Kyousuke, tying up loose ends. Although it lacked suspense regarding the ultimate "decision," I can't say I wasn't happy with it. Closure
is a rare occurrence in anime, since many cannot contain their stories in one season, and must have an open end, ultimately left to the highly competitive market to maintain them until the end. We made it. The story split the audience into factions cheering for even the most unlikely girls, if u can guess who they are, and still maintained a sequence of events that were plausible and enjoyable. While many of us didn't get the ending we wanted, the ending presented to us makes sense. There were a several details that were overlooked, but overall, good ending.
The Art  was enjoyable as always, maintaining the mood of the scenes. While not being the highest quality for this season of Anime (Chuunibyou being on the high end), it still held its own, bringing life to the story of Kyousuke Kousaka.
The Characters  gave everyone somebody to root for. Tsundere fans loved Kirino. Kuudere fans loved Kuroneko. Yandere fans got Ayase. Dandere fans liked Manami. Throw in Kanako, Saori, and the BL loving Sena, and nobody is left disappointed. Kyousuke himself was a good main character. He struggled in love, but stayed loyal to his feelings. I find his ultimate decision interesting, but to each his own.
I very much enjoyed this series. Although it didn't fully grab me emotionally, it kept a smile on my face.
To sum it all up, I have no regrets. Do not be deterred by the siscon theme when considering watching the show (yet I'm pretty sure almost everybody who reads this will have already seen most of the series. If u like drama, romance, harems, and a little fan service here and there, this is the show for you.
Final Score: 
P.S. really hard not to write with spoilers. Also my first review.
Yes, I gave the most controversial and infamous episodes of 2013 an 8/10. Care to know why before downvoting? Read the review!
It will probably piss off the absurd majority of readers and will probably get buried under page 20~30, but I'll write it anyway.
[Note that this is a review for the "specials" released as eps. 14~16 and the conclusion of the anime]
While I'm still appreciating the afterglow of this series, I get me wondering if the reason why I could fully enjoy it is because I'm not part of the fandom.
This ought to be the most reasonable conclusion, given that it successfully made the entire
fanbase look like fools.
...well not as terrific as Haruhi's Endless Eight, though.
OreImo originally had a lot of comedy, and I'm more than pleased to see that writers kept that ideal to the very end.
Throughout the whole 2nd season there are scenes with wonderful comedy tones and really good gags. Worth mentioning the skillful performance of the voice actors and animators that managed to get the best of these moments.
Luckily enough, I was one blessed being and wasn't spoiled about the "infamous ending" beforehand so I didn't have many expectations to these final episodes, just that the comedy might loose the spotlight for a bit of drama... or some kind of dark humor.
I wasn't wrong.
However it seems this "comedy" felt like a huge bitchslap for many, given the huge amount of rage-filled reviews here in this community.
It's often said that "you shouldn't turn mad at a story just because your get-a-girl game ended up with a pairing you disliked", but I can't blame these raging reviewers. In this case writers overdid it.
There's no need to review sound, characters, artwork or either of these textbook categories. This is a 3 eps. special and most likely those who are reading it already watched both seasons and don't need someone babbling about it.
You came here for the controversial story, and I shalt deliver it.
As many of you know, the OreImo TV anime is based on both the Visual Novel and the Light Novels.
Its story's setup is the classic harem with the some of most clichés characters it can get (i.e; the childhood friend, the outcast, the pretty and popular bishoujo).
It probably broke records in terms of Tropes in a single series and producers -well aware of that- even joked about it during some episodes.
But this isn't what makes people riot neither what makes it infamous -even though it should-
The true reason is because it decides to take a different path of harems and romances and assimilates more to bittersweet dramas. Usually when a eroge/harem VN is adapted to TV animation, producers choose to animate one "route" and therefore have a clear one-sided ending.
Sometimes they even deviant from the pattern and create an original ending, but there's always a slice of the fanbase that is happy with it, justifying the choice.
That's how the market works, that's how the harem VNs industry works.
But "what if...?"
OreImo -despite this being the shovel that would dig their monetary grave- as incredible as it gets, chooses to animate one single segment of the VN.
Why? Well, you'll find out if you consider external factors to the anime.
Otherwise, you shall not get fooled by this concept. They did took action to prevent a financial failure.
Just think about why it was released as a "special" and not part of the series and how much profit was made out of VNs and LNs and "extras" selling for those who eager for MORE.
If you were spoiled beforehand of what happens in the final minutes, I cannot guarantee you'll enjoy this as much as you could, but it will sure be entertaining to some extend.
I'm too afraid of giving up spoilers if I keep writing so this will end here.
Let's just say that, as a HAREM, this series had a very distributed fanbase, with people "cheering" each one for their own waifus, so it's a rather unlikely scenario that everyone would riot like this, correct? Well, no.
They all got mad in the end.
If writers actions didn't have an explanation then people would indeed have a reason to rage, but considering how it was written, how it happened, the meaning behind it and how it closed up, I can't help but congratulate them.
They took the solution which would work the best for them socially and monetary, and performed this final troll act gloriously!
As an addendum, my apologies to formal norm-followers review writers/readers. Indeed "I" couldn't help but include first person sentences in this text.
It isn't meant to be serious anyway, so it's fine.
I know a lot of people are bitter about this ending but let me just say this, I feel it was perfect. Obviously spoilers galore ahead.
We got the build up, the confessions, to see them as lovers (wasn't that kiss beautiful?) but honestly after all we've been through thats not what this show is. It's fun, its lighthearted and above while it seems we are back to square one its pretty obvious that we are not.
There is so much progress in their relationship. They are open with each other, friendly and know how each other feel. They have a unique relationship and while they
can't be together forever as lovers (they had their fun), they can be together forever as siblings and best friends.
We've seen the misadventures, the comedy, the seriousness, adorable characters, heartbreak, a beautiful and terrifying Ayase-san, the equally beautiful Kuroneko and of course the always awesome Kirino . I had so much fun with this entire series and am glad they capped off the second season. I'll miss you Oreimo!
Well then, let's get a few important things out of the way. As I go into this in an attempt to lose my review virginity, I'll also add that I see OreImo specials not as standalone, but as a continuation of OreImo2. This should go without saying - They are the final episodes. I'll attempt to write this without using overly complicated words. I believe reviews should be friendly and will do my best to explain my points and try to be concise. And, by the way, there will be spoilers lower down - You can choose not to read them, but it makes understanding
this review harder. This is because, after all, these are the final episodes.
I'll assume you have either watched OreImo1 and OreImo2 (I'll refer to this bundle of last episodes as OreImo Specials), and you're just wanting to check what's up with all the low ratings and bad ranting over how this is the "Worst Anime ending ever/in recent history/that I can think of" that you've seen tossed around. Because let's be fair, if you're reading the reviews of OreImo Specials, the last few episodes of OreImo2, then you likely have read the reviews of OreImo1 and 2, have already finished the series, or are just reading before tackling it after finishing OreImo2 (Or deciding if it's worth your time.)
Let's change topic. You undoubtedly like watching your pairings get coupled up. However, if there are two love interests B and C for character A, if character A pairs with character C then we'll have B fans sad. Flip your coin - If A pairs with B, then we'll have C fans sad.
Harems are an unforgiving genre. You'll end up with very likely an open ending and lots of people throwing their favorite girls at you. OreImo specials is not in the Harem genre according to MAL, so maybe you think this is a weird comparison - But like I said, you have probably watched or read about OreImo 1 and 2 and should know that our Main Character Kyousuke has a rather uncommon number of girls waiting around him. As such, it is only natural that out of all the girls, there will be people shipping for one pairing, people for others, and so on.
Let's tackle the review in itself now, shall we?
Art, Sound and Character - You don't need to come here to read about them - This is the continuation of OreImo2 and as such all the ratings from there should cross over to here apart from Enjoyment and perhaps Story. Everything else is the same. I'll be the first to say I enjoy the Art and Sound and while not a masterpiece it doesn't leave me wishing for more or cringing when I hear a tune or see a character move. Some Characters feel rushed in OreImo Specials!, and some are tossed aside - but ultimately they are the same characters as before, and their development has already happened (And, in the case where it didn't happen, it tries to happen here and feels very, very rushed.)
Well then, we go into our InceStory that you probably have already followed. I won't lie - it's hard to explain the ending without spoilers. So let's just say - This contradicts your usual harem ending. There's no openness - Girls are turned down repeatedly so that our character gets with the one he loves. It sounds pretty normal - The problem is how it was executed.
In a word, it feels rushed. Some characters that have been developing on screentime since just about the first few episodes of OreImo1 get chewed and tossed aside; as characters that are fan favorites are disregarded, it will leave a bitter taste in your mouth as you see the beloved pairing you have been shipping for a while drop it's chance from whatever you believed it was to 0 in no time flat. On the other hand, characters that barely had screentime all of a sudden decide to confess; they haven't had enough development to leave any meaningful impact, and it ends up feeling like it's trying to toss you as many denials as possible.
That apart, once our beloved protagonist finally finds and enters a relationship with his love, then everything's fine. If not for one problem - how this ultimately ends.
And this is why there is such a downrate in enjoyment. It's hard not to dislike something when you see your favorite characters get tossed aside for development that feels like it "resets" at the end, as if you're suddenly back on square 0. It's not something a lot of people can claim to enjoy. But if you look past the enjoyment, there are things to be learnt, too. Because OreImo tackles the theme of Incest, Love, and Otaku Culture, right? Hasn't this been something said in several reviews and by several people in different places? Though the last one has been left lacking in OreImo Specials (otaku culture) - you should probably pay attention to these and how they're developed. It's as interesting as the characters themselves, and it helps you understand the ending. If it doesn't bring you to like it, then it will be at least "passable".
Let's resume before I tackle a spoilered review which I feel is very much needed, although this'll be contradicting of the guideline. If you like shipping, if you like watching your pairing - Who doesn't? - you'll be left slightly disappointed. What really hurts for most is how the single relationship ultimately ends, which, albeit sad, is a necessary ending. If you look past the hate of reaching back to square 0, the scores are the same; sound, art, character; and if you think about it you might even heighten the story score a bit. This is by no means a perfect ending, but this is, by no means, a bad story or a "bad" ending. Surely it's an ending that will leave you bitter and "void" but it's something that, with how the anime was handled and how it tackled the subjects it tackled, was needed. This is the continuation of OreImo2 with a fitting ending that, ultimately, reminds us that OreImo isn't one of the Eroges that Kirino loves to play, or a slice of life where the characters magically have all their problems fixed in the end. OreImo never had super powers and it never tackled anything otherworldly. OreImo ultimately is a tale of love between two siblings; forbidden love between two siblings, just because they're siblings, and how the society views this - and also, how the society views other things such as Otaku Culture (Although this is more related to OreImo1).
This marks the end of the un-spoilered review. So, let's see who did what that I mentioned in the unspoilered review.
Kuroneko is probably the one that, when rejected, makes a lot of people enter the "dislike" mode. The reasons are clear - In a very dramatic scene, she ends up crying after Kyousuke declares he won't date her and that he truly loves Kirino. On the other hand, "rushed" is what defines Kanaka the best. Someone that barely had screentime or character development with Kyousuke suddenly confessing to him - That's a bit absurd.
And in comes the problem that everyone has with OreImo Specials! The ending.
Kirino finally pairs up with Kyousuke and they start dating for a few weeks. Yeah, surprise - It's not like this had been building up for a while now, eh? (/sarcasm). There's yet another dramatic scene with Manami, where she attempts to tell both Kyousuke and Kirino that what they are doing is immoral and wrong. Siblings can't get married and they'd always be viewed as strange by society; after all it's not normal. However, Kyousuke, in a very anime like fashion, declares that he doesn't mind and that he loves Kirino.
They arrange a "marriage" and share a few moments. And then, Kirino reminds him of a "promess". Now, in the very last moments of the last episode of the last part of the OreImo franchise, you'll be seeing Kirino and Kyousuke agreeing to date for a few weeks, be the happiest they can get for these few weeks, and then break up.
And it doesn't lie and goes through with it.
And this is where everything falls down. It could be acceptable if they actually kept together; this would explain Kyousuke turning down every single girl just to stay with his sister, and could even satisfy some fans as a "good" ending. But...
You never saw any superpowers in OreImo apart from the usual anime delusions. You never saw anything absurd or abnormal, other-worldly happen. Yes, this is an anime; yes, this is a fantasy setting; yes, this is fictional; but it's still a story that passes in the "real" world. No, I'm not mixing fantasy with life or anything. This is the story about humans, just like me and you (I hope.) The anime proceeds to beat us back into the harsh reality that we're NOT going to see some crazy plot twist pulled out of the rear of the pen of the writer where their father goes up to them and says "By the way, you're adopted" or something similar. They're brothers. What I feel like is that this anime brings back and reminds us; "This isn't one of the Eroges that Kirino plays. This is simply the tale of the love between two siblings." Just like in the real world, this wall of morals and society that keeps people from doing a lot of things will set Kirino and Kyousuke apart and impossibilitate their dating, no matter how much they love eachother. Because they're siblings, and that's how it is; no matter how much you struggle for it, the fact that they're both siblings won't change. And OreImo had been tackling society views on many things, such as Otaku Culture and Incest since the beginning. Truly; it has been said that the mangaka had to change the ending because he did plan a full-incest ending but it wasn't accepted due to the implications of it. To be honest? Sure, I'd like a full-incest ending. But as an anime that had been tackling, even if very lightly, social views before, I think this ending is much more "realistic" and fitting of OreImo than any other that could possibly pull. Ultimately, it boils down to "Is it worth it to turn down every other girl just to date your loved one a bit, although it won't last?" For Kyousuke, the answer was yes. And unless some magic breaks them apart and suddenly makes them stop being siblings, they will, ultimately, have to break up; and Manami covers why nicely in her "fight". They were happy for a short time. Was it worth it?
Since the Oreimo finale made an unexpected attempt to deliver on the show’s initial premise, here are my thoughts on the big finish:
1) Kyousuke and Kirino have a really tame idea of what it means to be “lovers”. I kept waiting for the S-word to come up during their vague discussions of their future as Siblings In Love, but it seems a couple of chaste kisses and many exaggerated exclamations to Kyousuke’s premature harem constituted the entirety of their brief incestuous adventure.
2) As implied by the opening of this review, I was surprised when the incest taboo was finally broken. Incest as an anime
trope is notorious for being manipulated for laughs, exploited as fanservice, and/or cheaply skirted around at the last second (“Onii-chan was only my adopted brother all along! Yay!”) in order to “legitimize” whatever socially-outlawed relationship had been transgressing between the brother and sister characters in question. While I may not like the Oreimo franchise very much at all, one thing it doesn’t do is cop out on its viewers regarding the Bro/Sis dynamic. Despite my feeling constipated at the notion that Kyousuke broke up with Kuroneko to “be with” his sister, I nevertheless appreciated the plot development, in a weird sort of way.
3) This doesn’t mean I wasn’t at first frowning uneasily when both siblings loudly confessed their undying love for each other, though. I kept ticking off all the societal and biological repercussions that the show wasn’t so much as poking a stick at. I treat ridiculous cartoons aimed at salivating fanboys with as much sternness as I would an acclaimed piece of contemporary literature, because that makes so much sense.
4) Also I was crushed just a little bit that Kuroneko was kicked to the curb; she was my favorite Oreimo girl. (Bye-fu to my waifu.)
5) Toward the end of episode 16, Akagi said something along the lines of , “I couldn’t imagine myself and my brother going out, but [Kirino] sounded so happy bragging about [you two], so I started to think…maybe it’s okay after all”. This may not sound like the sociological breakthrough of the decade, but it’s a well-placed line all the same. It serves to remind viewers of the taboo while at once offering them a bit of sympathetic rationality. I may be making way too much of it, but it struck me as both a naive and understated perspective, and it improved my mood slightly as I watched the rest of the episode.
6) “We can be lovers until we graduate, and then we’ll go back to being normal siblings”. Really? This is your grand solution? I’d imagine it would be incredibly difficult to ever be “normal siblings” again after you’ve swapped spit and referred to each other as BF/GF.
7) Overall, the show reeks of generic anime RomCom, but it doesn’t make you lose faith in humanity, and after two seasons of teasing viewers with the promise of a relationship that never came to fruition, Oreimo delivered something...mostly palatable. More or less, anyway. If you're into this sort of thing. Which I imagine you'd have to be if you were a fan of the franchise.
What's up with all the Call of Duty rage kids suddenly thinking they can review a show based on one ending? Tell me, is that really the way to review a show? "Yes, but there's INCEST-" yeah. There is. You got a problem with that?
Now, I don't like incest. I absolutely dislike it and I believe it's wrong for two siblings to get together and become lovers. It didn't sit well with me from the beginning of the series mostly because of the title, and it never sat well with me with Yosuga no Sora. But check my profile. Where is Yosuga no Sora now?
What are my favorite anime shows ever? Yeah, oddly enough, I LOVE both of those incest shows. Incest matters. It's very unethical, and it's treading very deep waters when the siblings end up eloping. But that doesn't mean we have to undermine our previous thinking of such a show with our own prejudices. "Yes, but there's INCEST-" Okay, sit down. Shut up. Hear me out.
Story: I can't believe that I'd ever love an incest show as much as this, but oddly enough, here I am, and there are so many key factors that come into play when I think of this show. One of them is the solid storyline. It's a very touching story about a fractured relationship between two siblings, and how one unusual hobby brings them closer together. But as you watch this show, you realize that all the subtle behaviors of the siblings hint towards their developing feelings towards one another, which should set the stage for the finale. So don't tell me, "There's INCEST and it was so sudden-" just please spare me your BS. If you didn't pick it up, you're either the most dense person on the face of this planet or the fanboy who thinks, "IT'S NOT A GOOD SHOW WITHOUT ACTION!"
Fine, there's a whole mess of things that this show doesn't touch up on. These last few episodes ended quickly, in my opinion, and it felt a bit rushed as the common goal was to reach the ending and explain Volume 12 of the light novel in 3 episodes while featuring only what they feel is the most important to mention. This means they don't touch on some important key points, on some things that we will miss out on and it will actually matter whether or not we hear them, especially towards the end.
But still, I loved the story through and through, incest or not.
Art: I'm a bit biased when it comes to sampling Aniplex's work, but the whole reason I am a big fan of that specific studio is their involvement with the Oreimo series. I know anime shows tend to be a bit stiff when it comes to character movements, restricting a good number of actions from happening the way you'd probably want to see them, but the animation in Oreimo is nice and fluid. Have you ever had that feeling that when you watch someone's actions in a show, they have a small amount of influence on your movements as you sit in your seat and watch? I feel that sometimes. Stiff animation, stiff movement in the real world. Smooth animation, and I feel like I can lose a bit of tension. You know what? That's a weird topic. I don't even know how to explain it.
Sound: If I had anything to say about sound, I would comment on the background music. I feel like they simply stuck songs in places they saw fit, especially when the mood of the song did not fit the mood of the scenario. In one scenario, Kirino runs off. The song they play isn't exactly a sad song, but what is it supposed to make you feel? I don't feel that Kyousuke has hurt someone's feelings by saying what he said when I listen to the BGM. It takes away the dramatic impact of the scene. That's what I think happens, and that's what happens occasionally throughout these last episodes.
Otherwise, do you like ClariS or have you always enjoyed the catchy ending themes? I do too.
Character: Let's get real. You're here and you probably saw the first two seasons of Oreimo. If you loved all the characters in episodes past, you'll love the characters. They don't go through any significant changes, so it's really not worth going too deeply into that subject.
However, if any of you are total Yandere Ayase fans, she doesn't appear at all in these last few episodes. She gets no screen time, no mentions, nothing. It's as if they completely dropped her altogether. I know she's not as important as other characters in this series and her appearance wouldn't make a difference, but when it comes to shows about to end, there's often a brief mention of each character and where each of them end up by the end of the series. The last time we saw Ayase, she said her goodbyes to Kyousuke. Okay. What happened after that?
Enjoyment: Believe it or not, this was my most anticipated anime show this season. It wasn't Shingeki no Kyojin for sure, because while that show is a brilliant show, I didn't bother buying a month of Crunchyroll Premium to see it in 1080p every week. This was different. I activated Crunchyroll Premium just to see these last few episodes, because I was feeling a great deal of anxiety and frustration over not seeing the ending. And did it alleviate my anxiety? Yes and no.
Yes it did. I was thrilled to finally see that all turned out well and the show as a whole ended on a lighthearted note. A couple good laughs and an overall great feeling that you get when you finish watching a great series. I felt all of that, of course, being a huge fan of Oreimo.
And no, it didn't. I'm still anxious after watching it a full day later and I can't stand this one issue: it's over. I watched the ending, thinking, "wait a minute, that's it?" I was hoping for a continuation of what happens to all the characters years after this moment. The ending was so abrupt and so sudden that it caught me off-guard, and this is why I am really hoping to find out what happens to each of these characters after all this. It ended happily, but I can't help but feel a sense of dissatisfaction, feeling there's more to it but let's face it, there's nothing more. I'd like to get my hopes up that there's something after all this, but I know it's not happening.
Overall: Whatever. It's incest, it's a very disturbing subject and widely unaccepted in society. But what does it matter? Great story, great art direction, catchy theme songs, fun characters, and a high enjoyment factor make this one of my favorite shows ever, incest or not.
There's a great selection of outstanding shows featuring incest, and if you want to continue keeping your mind closed, be my guest. But as much as you want to rate it down and as much as you want to throw your own prejudices out there and rant about having to deal with the ending, this is still a great show. Get over the fact that it will happen, focus on the title and all the hints you were given, and do you have any right to complain that this show took the direction that it did? You really don't.
I'm surprised at all the bad reviews these last three episodes got, but after reading some, it seems like many people are just mad that they didn't get the pairing they wanted. So a word of advice to prospective watchers...
Watch it. Because it's the end, and most of all, because it's an actual ending. I guarantee that all the plots are resolved, with a few interesting twists for good measure. Just try to ignore whatever pairing you were hoping for, and enjoy it as a story
However, if you finished the episodes and are just window-shopping for opinions, I got just what you need...
SPOILERS! and more,
all for free! Just read the fine print below:
While the over-the-top rejection of every girl (except Kirino) seemed cruel, it had to be done. Kyousuke loved Kirino, period. And while Kyousuke messes around a lot, he's honest and straightforward when it comes to people's feelings. He is the hero, after all.
As for Kyousuke and Kirino's breakup, I know that many wanted them to end together. However, with all its wild antics and crazy scenarios, it was about time for the story to have a reality-check. Incest is looked down upon in our society, and while one might want to defend it (as the series not-so-subtly does), there's no avoiding the stigma against it.
Thus, a committed relationship between Kyousuke and Kirino would inevitably cause more pain in the long run. On the other hand, ignoring those feelings would just haunt them for the rest of their lives. Like many real life struggles, a happily-ever-after was impossible, and the situation seemed hopeless. But the beauty is in what they made of it. They lived out their dreams to the fullest, if only for a moment, so that they could step back into reality.
It's a story of the balance between society and individuality, between fantasy and reality. In the final scene, Kyousuke reminisces on the past 2 years, and is sad that it ended, but happy that it happened. And that's exactly how I feel about the series. 10/10
I saw this at Otakon 2013 for the worldwide premiere with author Tsukasa Fushimi, director Hiroyuki Kambe and editor Kazuma Miki. Being in a theater meant deafening applause and laughter at times, but it was still a great experience.
While these OVAs were absolutely hilarious and entertaining, the story left off on a very abrupt note. Without a satisfying conclusion, I can't say the story was that great. That being said, the ride up until that point was lightning-paced and thoroughly enjoyable. It was fun to see where all of the characters ended up.
Art style is the same as the rest of the series,
with realistic backgrounds and well-drawn characters firmly set in modern-day Japan. Might even see some familiar Tokyo landmarks when you watch. Very well done, nothing remarkable.
The OST and theme song remained the same, so there is nothing to complain about. The endings were okay at best. Given the dramatic nature of the story, I believe the voice actors really gave it their all, especially Yuuichi Nakamura (Kyousuke).
Once again, it was wonderful to see where everyone ended up. Kyousuke and Kirino's relationship reaches a dramatic climax, while other characters stepped out of the limelight. Sadly, Ayase is practically forgotten. Realism may have been thrown aside too much for the sake of entertainment. Speaking of which...
This was the most fun I have ever had watching anime. While the ending was a bit of a letdown, every episode was humorous and dramatic enough that I enjoyed every minute. Think the creators wouldn't go there? Think again. Nearly everything you wanted to see happen by the end of this series did.
After sticking with these characters for two seasons, these OVAs were a real treat. While the regular series was pretty evenly paced, these episodes were laugh-out-loud fun right to the end.
Few endings have attracted more ire from fans than this one, and for good reason. Not only is the choice for Kirino and Kyousuke to form a couple utterly bewildering, but every other character in the series gets the short end of the stick to make it happen. Truthfully, the more I think about this ending the more things I find about it to hate. I hate the way Kanako’s feelings for Kyousuke were shoehorned in out of nowhere. I hate the way Manami is treated as the villain despite doing nothing wrong. I hate the apathetic manner that Kyousuke approaches the whole
affair. And above all, I hate hate hate the way this ending will forever taint my positive memories of the rest of the series. Reading through my second Oreimo essay, it astonishes me that I was able to accept this and move on the first time I watched this show. How? How was I okay with this? How could anyone be okay with this? Imagine if, during the K-On! movie, the girls’ plane to London crashed and all of them died. That sounds horrible, doesn’t it? Well, that’s about how I feel about this ending. It’s completely out of place tonally, it’s poorly executed, and it forever haunts the series with this depressing spectre.
Now, for fairness sake, before I get too carried away with trashing the ending, I feel obligated to mention the relatively few things it actually does well. Episode fourteen’s confession scene was actually rather solid on an aesthetic level. If it didn’t come with all the baggage of incest and didn’t involve ruining no less than three girls’ hopes and dreams to make it happen, it might have even been a good scene. The way that Kyousuke tries to catch Kirino by running but ultimately fails to reach her is a nice way of hearkening back to an earlier scene showing that Kirino was inspired to take up running because she couldn’t catch up with Kyousuke many years prior. Likewise, the way Kyousuke ends up being assisted by Saori and Kuroneko really helps bring the narrative together in a neat way. I also particularly enjoyed Kyousuke’s line during his confession, “all love is gross, whether in eroge or in real life,” as it served as a surprisingly poignant way of rebutting Kirino’s constant proclamations of “gross!” over the course of the series. To sum up, the ending is bad not because of the way it is presented, but in spite of it. Most of the dialogue is good, everything is quite cinematic (in particular, the scene where Kyousuke forever rejects Kuroneko under the streetlamp has always stuck out to me), and production values maintain their quality from the rest of the show. The only problem is, well, the actual events that transpire.
Glad we got that cleared up. Now let’s talk about the bad.
The notion of incest was first noticeably implied around episode two or three of season two, and it only becomes more obvious from there. From this, it seems likely to me that this ending was not a sudden devilish idea upon the part of the writer, but rather a notion that he had been entertaining from early on. With this being as it may, it is astonishing to me that this ending is as messy as it is. Why does everyone confess to Kyousuke during the last five episodes if this was planned from the beginning? Why are so many characters hurt in the end? I simply don’t understand how he could let this happen. The rest of the series shows me that this man is clearly a fairly competent writer, so why? Did he do this as some kind of elaborate commentary on how normalizing incest eroge can lead to an anomie where people no longer see incest as a taboo? Almost certainly not. Will Kirino and Kyousuke’s love even last or is it merely some teenage fling that just happened to ruin the hopes and dreams of everyone around them? We can’t be sure. Ultimately, I don’t think we can ever know exactly what inspired the extraordinary lapse of reason that led to this ending. All we can do is wonder what happened?
I touched on this a bit before, but the worst thing about this ending (and this is a lofty distinction considering the boundless number of things that I hate about the way this show ends) is definitely how damned sad it is. No one ends up happy—not even Kyousuke and Kirino. After their cinematic kiss at the end of the final episode, we are led to believe that they don’t even stay with one another. Society will forever condemn their relationship, they ruined their friendships with several people to make it happen, and in the end they don’t even stay together! If that’s not the dreariest ending imaginable, I’m not sure what is… and they got the good end of the deal. As I have mentioned, Ayase, Kanako, and Kuroneko all have their hopes of love mercilessly shattered, but the truest loser here, I think, is Manami.
Good lord, I’m so sorry Manami. You didn’t deserve this. You didn’t deserve any of this. Not only is the scene that features her in the final episode the most painful in the entire series, it may very well be among the most painful scenes I have ever encountered in an anime. After confronting Kyousuke and Kirino about their relationship, she voices her disgust for what they are doing (a reasonable reaction to have, by all accounts) and then gets into a fistfight with Kirino. I’m not going to lie, I do like Kirino, but there was a real feeling of catharsis in seeing her punched mercilessly in the gut by Manami. Unfortunately, outside of the punch, nothing in this scene goes well for Manami in the slightest. She sustains substantial damage from Kirino herself, ultimately having her glasses broken. This leads to perhaps the eeriest part of the entire series for me. It is difficult for me to describe, but there is something deeply chilling about the way Manami looks without her glasses. The cute softness of her face is all but gone, and we are left with something harsh—almost scary. This is made all the more disturbing by what Manami says in this state: that Kyousuke and Kirino’s relationship can never survive, and more importantly that she has always loved Kyousuke. Kyousuke, of course, rejects her in an irritatingly bombastic fashion. Then, in return she says “that was the worst reply ever”— a line that would almost be funny if it weren’t so sad. In the end, while with Ayase, Kanako, and Kuroneko there was a definite sadness to their rejection, with Manami it’s outright depressing. I can’t help but think of how, after this scene ends, she will go home to realize that she has lost her best friend and love of ten years. And she lost him to his own sister—someone who he can never even stay with. All of this from a show that was once an upbeat comedy series.
I have rarely felt worse after watching an anime than after watching this scene. I felt empty and frantic and even a little bit nauseous. I wanted to bang my head against the wall until it gave way. I wanted to yell “FUCK YOU OREIMO!” at the top of my lungs. I wanted to run as fast as I could to nowhere in particular. Most of all, I wanted to purge this show from my mind, and perhaps from existence entirely. I am not an emotional man, but dear God, this scene—this ending broke me. I’ve heard that when it was first published, this ending caused such an outrage that many previous fans burned the entire series or sold it for almost nothing just to get it out of their possession, and I can see why. This may not be the worst ending ever, but it is certainly the most painful that I have seen. Between the way the harem elements were lazily shoehorned in, the way Kyousuke callously turns down the girls, and above all, the mean-spirited way that Manami is treated in her final scene—all in all, this is an ending that I will probably never forget. But for all the wrong reasons.
* * *
Let’s Talk About Incest!
One issue I have been skirting around in the discussion of this show’s ending is, of course, the incest. Now, I am not, on principle, against the use of consensual incest in fiction, but it has a very specific time and place where it is acceptable. Importantly, if a work is going to employ incest as a plot point (and if it wants to be taken seriously), it needs to a) treat the incest as an important plot element and b) treat the incest as a taboo. Neither of these things are really true of Oreimo. In fact, Oreimo’s ending treats incest in a shockingly irreverent fashion. This is particularly odd to me because the first season seemed quite self-aware and contained many jokes poking fun at the way incest is fetishized in modern otaku culture. One of its great strengths was the way it contrasted Kyousuke and Kirino’s growing platonic relationship with the sexual relationships in Kirino’s eroge. Yet, somehow the series ends with a complete reversal: an unequivocal embrace of incest. In a sense, this serves to cheapen the platonic relationship of the first season by suggesting that there was always a sexual element to Kyousuke and Kirino’s relationship. I can only ask: what happened? What was there to be gained by adding the incest element to this show? And if there was anything to be gained, why on earth was it executed so poorly?
To be fair to this show, not every element of the incest was poorly handled. The majority of the second season is dedicated to building up Kirino and Kyousuke’s romantic relationship, so there can be no complaints that it came out of nowhere. Moreover, a good amount of emphasis is placed on showing why the Kousakas developed their feelings for one another. The real star here is season two episode thirteen, which is probably the only genuinely good episode in the latter half of season two. This episode takes the form of an extended flashback narrated by Kirino. According to her, she looked up to her brother as a child but became disillusioned with him as he tended increasingly towards laziness and mediocrity during his adolescence. By the time the chronological start of the series came about, she had come to view the real Kyousuke as an entirely separate person from the brother she once admired as a child. This, I gather, is why she has few inhibitions about thinking about him romantically. Now, obviously this flashback sequence does not provide a complete picture of why this incestuous relationship came about; for instance, it does not explain at all why Kyousuke has no problems thinking about his sister romantically. Even so, it does a genuinely good job of putting Kirino and Kyousuke’s romantic relationship in a more believable context, so the flashback is certainly beneficial to the show’s overall narrative.
Sadly, my praise ends there. While the motivations are fairly well done, the social aspect of the incest is seriously blundered. To see just how poorly this is handled, one need look no further than the aforementioned scene with Manami during the last episode. Since she is really the only character to express discontent with the idea of Kirino and Kyousuke’s incestuous relationship, Manami can be viewed as a sort of voice for society. She says more or less what you would expect any normal person to say in this situation: “I think it’s disgusting for siblings to be in a relationship.” If Manami’s statements led to some kind of real discussion about the implications of incest then perhaps I would be okay with this scene, but that is not what happens. Instead, Kyousuke bellows some impassioned nonsense about how he wants to “bring on that real sister end!” without ever meaningfully engaging with Manami’s ideas. Likewise, when Manami brings up the central question of what the Kousakas’ parents will think, Kyousuke responds with a shallow “Please don’t tell my dad! He’ll kill me!”
This is the crux of the issue. The writer appears to believe that merely mentioning that there are moral and social issues at play with incest is sufficient to make it acceptable. Kyousuke, Kirino, and, indeed, the show itself, seem to brush off these issues as though they are totally irrelevant. But, of course, they are not irrelevant. Imagine, if you will, if Vladimir Nabokov's seminal novel Lolita ended with the adult Humbert Humbert marrying 12-year-old Dolores Haze and the only reaction to this was one character who says “Ew, don’t do that.” Obviously, this example is completely absurd, but it is worryingly similar to what happens in Oreimo. Despite incest being a serious taboo (not as serious as pedophilia, but still heavily frowned upon), the only negative reaction it receives is from Manami, and she’s framed as the villain. Saori takes the middle ground, saying that she doesn’t really condone it but that she’s not going to try and stop it either, and everyone else says nothing negative at all. The only explanation I can see for why incest is treated this way in Oreimo is that the writer was only really interested in employing it at a purely shallow, fetishistic level. At the same time, though, he didn’t want to look bad so he pretended to treat it seriously by casually mentioning moral issues. Pure and simple, it’s bad, lazy writing.
In the end, Oreimo’s objectionable treatment of incest is, at best, tasteless, and at worst an active detriment to the entire brother-sister dynamic established by the first season. It’s not bad enough to ruin the show by itself—not for me at least—but combined with the deluge of other shortcomings present in this show’s ending, it seriously taints my viewpoint of the whole series. This is especially unfortunate because I liked the first season before I saw how things concluded—I really earnestly liked it. But I’ll be damned if I ever want to watch, or even think about this show again after witnessing this atrocity of an ending.