Interviews with Monster Girls – Preview
Interviews with Monster Girls:
Original Air Dates: January 7th, 2017 – ???
Synopsis: Genetic Mutations sprouted up throughout the population, giving birth to humans with abnormal abilities or characteristics. These people came to be known as “demi-humans” individuals with traits more closely associated to vampires, or dullahans, or succubi. Takahashi Tetsuo, a biology teacher at a certain high school has been highly interested in studying and getting to know “demi-humans,” but he’s never actually managed to meet them. But all that changes with the new year, as three demi-human girls enroll and the newest teacher is a Succubi herself.
1st Episode Review (Warning: Some Spoilers to Follow):
Linny: When the episode first started, the animation and character design looked very simplistic to me. I don’t mean that it looked bad, just that it seemed to stick to the basics, putting few details into the faces of characters or the scenery. It does get more detailed than the first few minutes itself but overall, there is this air of simplicity in the designs.
Tom: Monster Girls can almost be taken as an allegory for coming to understand the life of someone living with a disability. While many Monster Girl anime focus on romance or comedic perversion, Interviews is more interested in exploring the everyday life and difficulty these girls face. As we come to understand being a Vampire, Snow Woman, or anything else isn’t a blessing, but seems far more like a curse. That’s not to say Interviews is depressing or heavy handed. Rather it explores its world through fun comedic interactions between Takahashi-sensei and all the Demi-Human girls that have joined the school for the new year. It’s not raunchy and that’s a solid bonus.
Linny: For anyone who either drooled or grimaced when reading the title of the show and was reminded of another notorious anime with Monster in the title that also featured demi-human girls, know that Interviews is a completely different show. It’s a lot more chaste and even touching than that other fan service ridden show was and has the potential to appeal to a much wider audience. In its premiere, the lore of the world is established enough to give you a general idea of what’s going on but not so much as to feel like a lecture. Some viewers might be wanting more answers, but for now it does a solid job of filling in the viewers on the basics. And of course, the most unique thing about this show is unlike most other stories that glamorize or sexualize demi-human girls, this show makes them feel like humans living with and dealing with certain disadvantages rather than fearful and powerful beings to be lusted after.
Tom: One big draw is the girls themselves. Hikari is bouncing with energy. She’s cute, funny and charming. Her enthusiasm is infectious and the animation behind her mannerisms really sells that appealing charm. We haven’t gotten to know the other two monster girls all that well yet, but from our brief interactions with Kyouko, the Dullahan, she too seems like a fun character. Shy yet adorable.
Linny: We even have an older demi-human female in the form of a new math teacher, Sakie Satou who also happens to be a succubus. And unlike other succubi in anime, she is dressed extremely modest and does her best not to let out her demi-human nature. And unlike other shows, while her determination is a bit of a punchline, Sakie doesn’t “accidentally” slip up and reveal her smutty side… atleast not yet anyway. In fact, it’s quite the opposite as she seems very wary about her succubus nature and the attitude others have towards it making her one of the most unique succubi I have encountered in anime to date.
Tom: What’s a real bonus to the show’s likability is the way in which Takahashi interacts with any of these girls. There’s no creepy under vibes, no sense that he finds these girls sexually appealing. He just has an interest in their way of life, their differences and a general curiosity in their well being. Even when the show delves into a brief, but sexual conversation, it handles the proceedings delicately, and should leave most viewers feeling comfortable, rather than unnerved.
Linny: Takahashi is definitely one of the more realistic and non sexual male protagonists for one surrounded by all these women. He seems genuinely interested in the girls as a subject study, as individuals with personality and doesn’t seem to possess any maliciously perverted thoughts about them. As Tom mentioned, there is one somewhat ‘erotic’ discussion but it’s more of a throwaway line than one that hints at him trying to proposition the girl.
Tom: Interviews with Monster Girls is based off a manga, but not of the same name. In an effort to find Monster Girls a ready made audience, its title has gotten an alteration in the translation, renaming Demis/Demi-humans to Monster Girls, presumably to pick up on fandoms of Monster Musume and other such Monster type titles. The trouble is Monster Girls is nothing like the others, offering little ecchi content. This means this renaming paints Interviews in a certain light that just isn’t representative. But what’s here is definitely great and if the show can keep things up it’s likely to be a contender for Anime of the Winter Season.
Linny: I’ll be honest and admit that besides Showa, Monster Girls is the first new show this season that made me sad I was going to have to wait an entire week for the next episode. It’s funny, it’s fresh, it’s cute and it might even have a deeper message than you’d think at first glance. It has heart and substance and while it’s marketing tactic name change is something I am unhappy about, I would love to recommend this show to any and all of you who enjoy comedy with substance. It’s far too early to lavish too much praise on this show just yet, but for now, I am eagerly anticipating the next episode.