Fair warning before you start reading: I will be hatin’ on moe in this post. You may retort with the point that you think I’ve been doing that in pretty much every single Ore no Imouto post. That is not the case. I’ve been mainly picking apart problems with the writing, plot construction, poor attempts at humour or whatever the latest problem plagued this anime (and the occasional praise where warranted). But this time it’s different. It’s a very fundamental problem with moe as a whole. You have been warned.
The episode itself continues Ore no Imouto’s downward spiral into nothingness. The episode was pretty much devoid of a narrative, beyond maybe the fact that Ayase is warming up ever so slowly to Kirino’s hobby. There’s no rhyme nor reason behind these episodes anymore. It lacked humour as well. Sticking characters in embarrassing outfits only ever works when we have some sort of emotional attachment to the characters and understand the embarrassment they are feeling. It’s a pretty weak attempt at humour in any case, as the inevitable maid cosplay in the next episode will show, but even the very basis of the humour fails when it involves Ayase and Kayako, two characters the show hasn’t made me give a shit about as of yet. The only grin I really got from the episode was Kyousuke’s cosplay as a member of the Men in Black.
But let’s not just dismiss the episode at take a proper look at the message. Back when the show began, people were comparing Ore no Imouto to Genshiken, on the basis they were both about coming to terms with your own hobby, both cases being otaku-ism. For the most part, that theory has dropped off as the show progressed, but there was some basis for that theory. Ore no Imouto was giving off this message that you should be more open about your love for your hobby, especially in episode 2 where Kirino an Kuroneko opened up to each other when they couldn’t in front of the yaoi fangirls (surprise surprise, the best scenes in the anime involve Kuroneko yet again). But with the more recent episodes have put what happened in that episode into a different light. It was never about being more open about your own hobby. It was about being more open about your love of moe.
The part that set me off on this train of thought was a comment by Landon back on episode 7.
Maybe OreImo is attempting to mock the fans that think like Kuroneko, and the only reason why people think it’s the opposite way around is because they’re far closer to Kuroneko’s point of view. More often than not, the target of the joke doesn’t realize he’s being mocked.
That’d explain why OreImo goes right back to being an otaku pandering series: it expects you to find Kuroneko’s stance ridiculous while siding with the pervert sister.
Ore no Imouto is an otaku-pandering series. Anyone who still thinks otherwise is delusional to the extreme. You can still draw entertainment from some other parts of the series, and it’s true that there are still parts of this anime that are incredibly well written and witty Kuroneko exists. But the intention of the anime shapes the direction it takes, the messages it gives out and in turn can tear down what other entertainment you had drawn from the series.
There is no mocking of moe otaku here. The quality leap in animation for Kanako’s Meruru long, along with the attention and adoration they put into her song. The line afterwards about how she thought it was a good thing that the crowd were so enthusiastic about seeing Meruru. Moe is a good thing. This is where the plain and simple moe-hate on my part comes in. This isn’t a flaw in the writing anymore. This is just me reacting negatively to what I disagree with being placed on a pedestal for praise. The celebration of emotionally immature man-children who sexualise children (she wears a friggen elementary school backpack) because they can’t handle older women. I’ve heard the argument before that being a lolicon doesn’t mean you’re a pedophile. Biggest load of bullshit I’ve ever heard, they’re cheering for a real-life version of Meruru here. There’s no pure-intentions here either, they showed the Meruru porn earlier in the episode. They showed Kirino, who is simply the intended audiences persona inside a middle school girl, getting a nosebleed watching IRL Meruru. Ore no Imouto is celebrating all of that.
It disgusts me. I know people will try to argue that there’s more to moe than lolicon, but that’s what it was born from. It’s similar to how you can garner entertainment from Ore no Imouto even when you’re not it’s intended audience. You can derive entertainment from other areas, but the driving force behind moe is this sexualisation of innocence. A genre based entirely around sexual titillation is bad enough. Combining this with the fantasies of immature men who can’t grow up and face the world, you have the moe genre. If anyone wants to know why I don’t like moe, it’s all here.