Hiroe Ogawa is a healthy, normal girl with an extraordinary, private dilemma. Hiroe is unable to reach sexual climax under any circumstances. Over Hiroe's objections, older housemate Mayaka and landlady Yayoi use a varity of sexual techniques, appendages, and even hypnotism in order to help Hiroe achieve her elusive goal.
‘F3: Frantic, Frustrated and Female’ is a hentai with a difference; in a genre that is widely regarded as being tacky, tasteless and terrible, it manages to stand out from its competitors by only being two out of the three. Hentai are tacky and tasteless by nature, but at least this one isn’t terrible!
Well, relatively speaking.
F3 is the story of Hiroe Ogawa, a “healthy, normal girl, with an extraordinary private dilemma” [sic]. And just what kind of a dilemma could the female protagonist of a hentai anime be suffering from, you ask?
As you might have guessed, Hiroe’s problem is sex related; she
is unable to orgasm, and no matter how much ‘stimulation’ she receives, she can’t seem to reach a climax. Her little problem has forced her to pretend to come when she has sex with her boyfriend, to allow him to save face. But enough is enough, and it is about time this problem was resolved.
And so Hiroe does what any other “healthy, normal girl” would do in her situation; have lots and lots of lesbian sex with her roommate, lesbian classmates and her MILF dorm mother. Obviously.
It’s a little plain, but otherwise acceptable premise for a hentai; F3 spices it up a bit by including a wide range of bizarre things for Hiroe to go through on her quest for climax.
From amateur hypnotism to recruiting a mad scientist, nothing is too outrageous for F3. In the last episode, Hiroe even gets possessed by a pervy poltergeist. It’s not entirely in good taste and pretty ridiculous but actually rather entertaining to watch.
It's not often that hentai are amusing, and if they are its normally not intentional. But ‘F3’ manages to make a few funny gags that will have you giggling while you do whatever else it is that you do while you watch hentai.
On that subject, no doubt you’re curious as to whether or not F3 will cater to your own specific needs. In fact, it’s probably the only thing you actually care about.
It is a rather difficult task to think of a suitable double entendre to describe how much Yuri F3 contains, let’s just say it’s a stand out feature; in fact, with the exception of one short sex sequence featuring Hiroe and her boyfriend, the first two episodes are full of nothing but meaty lesbian action.
And if you didn’t think the use of ironic double entendres was appropriate in the previous paragraph, hopefully the pun about male sexual stamina was of some consolation.
If it was, you’ll be pleased to find out that the third episode doesn’t feature any males in it either. However, be warned that male appendages do make a return in this episode. Bizarre circumstances lead to Hiroe getting possessed by a penis weilding phantom. So if futanari isn’t your shtick (so to speak) you may want to fast forward through most of episode three.
There are also a few short sequences demonstrating a wide range of wacky perversions, including the tentacle scene that no self-respecting hentai could do without. Thankfully that other common hentai theme doesn’t make an appearance. That’s right, not a disturbing/sexist/offensive rape scene in sight!
Speaking of sights, F3 is actually quite a looker. Y’know, for a hentai, I mean. It’s obviously not going to win any awards for its contribution to the visual arts, but the animation is perfectly acceptable and the classic nineties art style has a wonderful charm about it.
Surprisingly, F3 actually managed to make it across the Pacific and was released on DVD and VHS in the US. Unfortunately F3’s style of censorship means that even the American version is censored, with black shadow-like smudges over the characters naughty bits. Removing these was obviously not viable, and so they remain. While it is a bit disappointing, thankfully they aren’t actually that intrusive. And it’s far easier on the eyes than the pixelated messes that you normally see in censored hentai.
The character designs are pretty standard fare for the era. Their faces are fairly angular, with large diamond shaped eyes, and framed by a range of hairstyles that were popular at the time. The girls have mature, womanly figures with nice curves and appropriately sized breasts.
As with most hentai, things like background artwork aren’t given too much priority, and F3 is no exception to the rule. The locations are pretty standard fare (bedrooms, classrooms etc.) with basic layouts and limited detail.
It is very much a product of its time, but in fact, that is one of the best things about F3. The early nineties art style comes across as rather comical which complements the zany story rather well, and it even feels a bit nostalgic. And with decent animation and unobtrusive censorship, this is about as good as it gets for hentai.
While F3 did not make use of the main benefit that comes with an American release, it did make use of the second; the opportunity to make an English dub. And it actually makes a decent job of it!
Since the dialogue in F3 tends to avoid over the top descriptions of the sexual acts on display, and the script seems to have been adapted for the dub, the transition from Japanese to English works out reasonably well. The voice actresses are competent for the most part, although some characters have a few issues with their delivery of lines. But since it’s mostly just moaning, groaning, ooohing and aahing, it’s perfectly tolerable.
For those of you that prefer women who sound less like women and more like children being physically tortured inside a helium tank, a Japanese dub is also available.
It’s perfectly acceptable as far as acting goes; but be warned that the subtitle track is not a translated version of the Japanese dub, but is instead a transcription of the adapted English dub. This becomes irritatingly apparent at numerous points in the show, where grunts and groans seem to be translated into full English sentences. Eventually this becomes so annoyingly distracting that even the biggest dub sceptics may find themselves switching over to English.
As far as genres go, ‘hentai’ is pretty damn awful; the very nature of hentai anime makes them intrinsically bad, pursuing cheap thrills rather than more noble qualities.
But some are not as bad as others, and as far as hentai goes, ‘F3: Frantic, Frustrated and Female’ is pretty good. Without any offensive or disturbing content and reasonable production quality, it manages to outperform the vast majority of hentai titles out there.
A show with so much to offer but unfortunately leaves you with more questions than answers, I reckon the last episode is what makes it fall flat, rather than wrapping the story up with a neat little bow like everyone was really watching it for, it jumps straight to a kind of Halloween feeling special episode, which whilst in itself was alright I feel that should have come after the gave us those vital answers to our questions, like is Hiroe's hair naturally blue or did she have it dyed, will she be able to reach her goal, what's her favourite soup, why couldn't she
reach her goal. Such a shame, so much potential.