While there were some people who stated that it might not be the case, the fan opinion off what ‘My Little Sister Can’t Be This Cute’ was going to turn out like was a wish-fulfillment for sibling deprived men who fantasise about having a little sister. Those who did not understand what it was like to have a little sister, the joys having a pre-pubescent girl waking them up in the middle of the night to play eroge sounded like their idea of heaven.
Certainly, there were folks who were eagerly anticipating their dreams being fulfilled in anime form. But for those of us not incestiously inclined, would there be any value? Would it, more importantly, have any sort of realistic brother/sister relationship in a medium that lusting after your sibling is the rule rather than the exception? Is having a little sister who is an otaku really that great? Why not ask those with experience then! So help answer that, I’m joined by mefloraine from Paper Flower who, like myself, has a younger sister who is an otaku (well, they watch anime, which is a start).
Scamp: Pre-discovery of her horrible, shameful secret (it’s always amused me how horrific the lable of otaku seems to be in anime. You’d swear from the reactions people have to the name that they had just implied someone was a pedophile or something…oh wait), it’s a fairly accurate depiction of family life. They acknowledge each others existence but beyond that don’t really think about it. You get so used to their existence that you stop thinking about them. Which is kinda what the start of the anime is saying. No, your little sister is not as cute as otaku culture makes them out to be.
mefloraine: Sister? What sister? You mean that creature I’m forced to drive all around town? I too was impressed by the show’s realism in this aspect. Little sisters are like a paperweight until you need to use them for something. Or until they come up and start pestering you for things. And no, it’s not cute pestering. It’s an incessant, loud whine and a repetition of your name that induces headache, not “d’awwww”.
Scamp: The whole scene where she reveals her hobby is actually pretty realistic too. I’m sitting there, waiting to unleash my hatred and squickyness of the whole siscon movement that I was expecting to take place, but this anime just refused to go that way. The sister acted…normal! The awkwardness when discussing something uncomfortable followed by the total ease of conversation that naturally flows between the two. Probably more importantly is the brothers reaction. There’s no gazing down the top, wild imaginations nor any of the typical reactions anime tends to put in these situations.
mefloraine: Unlike Scamp, I wasn’t afraid of potential siscon antics in this show at all, but it was much nicer to see what actually transpired. Not knowing about your sister’s hobby, such as her modeling job, was probably the easiest thing for me to relate to. Aside from the things I have to drive her to and what she’s watching for the current anime season, I have no idea what my sister does with her free time.
I think the only thing about this part of the episode that differed from what I would expect in reality was a lack of awkward laughing. Which would then transform into giggles and goading, but I think that might be because I’m an older sister, not an older brother. The awkwardness, however, would be the same. Either way, “My sister is actually very perverted? Hooray, maybe she’ll let me do weird things to her!” wouldn’t make any sense.
It was also pleasant to see: “And I don’t feel any love. Only anger, usually.” Yes. There is no moe, only irritation.
Scamp: But as realistic as I found the relationship between the two, this is still an anime that will toss out a gratuitous, pre-pubescent ass shot. Make no mistake, one of the main aims is still to make sibling-less otaku wish they had a little sister this ‘cute’. She’s not the type of sister that appears in one of her awful games, but the end result on the viewer’s side is the same. If you were a cynic, you wouldn’t be unable to look beyond that fact. But for a change, they’re not acting in world like it’s a totally normal thing to want and kawaii imouto that you not-so-secretly want to bone. That’s my main issue with the way most anime depict little sisters (including the “but she’s not blood related so it’s all right!” type) and to get one that actually says the total opposite is…refreshing I guess.
mefloraine: It’s very, very refreshing. In fact, this show takes that idea and spits on it. Kyousuke doesn’t care that his sister’s butt is wagging in the air. He just wants her out of his room. Kyousuke doesn’t care that she was a model; he didn’t even know! And then, Kirino sits and babbles about why she loves little sisters, and Kyousuke doesn’t understand it at all. Much like when my little sister rambles about why Hakuouki is actually watchable, but I digress.
Kirino doesn’t even fit her own ideal little sister character! Black hair and twin tails? Nope. Clearly she must not be a little sister. She just isn’t that cute.
Scamp: So that’s a perfect pass from two older siblings of sisters that are quite clearly ‘not that cute’. Which is exactly what this anime is trying to say. It actually ended up having one of the strongest first episodes of the season. Besides, if you actually want brother and sister getting it on, there’s Yosuga no Sora airing this season.