Love Tyrant – Mid Season Anime Review
Synopsis: The Kiss Note is a powerful notebook that makes people written in it instantly fall in love once they kiss. This magical item belongs to the angel Guri, who is tasked with creating couples. But when she accidentally writes Aino Seiji into her book, things become dire. If he doesn’t pucker up soon, Guri can kiss her life goodbye! Worse yet? While setting Seiji up, she finds herself falling for him! (Official Funimation Synopsis)
Mid Season (6 Episodes) Review (Warning: Some Spoilers to Follow):
Tom: Love Tyrant boasts an increasingly large cast of characters, introducing both mainstays and side characters at a decent rate. This in and of itself isn’t a problem as the series continues to utilize its main cast quite frequently. But issues crop up with the types of characters introduced, a number of whom are wholly offensive or downright creepy, rather than amusing. It’s a bit, your mileage may vary, but certain aspects to the show are far more likely to offend than offer up comedy. The best example is Stolas, often referred to as “Rape Penguin’ by various fandom circles. His character, a pseudo-anthropomorphic penguin, exists for one singular gag: his interest in sexually assaulting the main character’s sister. The first use of this gag is already uncomfortable, but what’s more frustrating is how the show brings Solas back just to repeat the same gag, with little variation or attempts to vary up this particular line of humor. It comes across as lazy and repetitive.
Linny: Love Tyrant has two yandere female characters who provide a nice change from the sea of tsunderes, though to be honest, one of them does switch into tsundere mode when it comes to her feelings towards the male protagonist. Unfortunately, almost every single character in the story can easily be reduced to the most common of cliches and stereotypes. For example, Seiji, our hero, is a horny yet shy virgin who also happens to be a good guy, for the most part, and is irresistible to women, even his own sister. Love Tyrant would be a potentially great fit for people who love their cliches dialed to 11, peppered with over the top manifestations of familiar tropes. This isn’t me dissing the show per say, just pointing out that there are many cliches in it which can still be enjoyable to certain audiences when played out in the over the top style of Love Tyrant. One could say that the women of the show are clearly its main draw thanks to their larger than life personalities and of course the ‘assets’ on some of them.
Tom: While Seiji is clearly the straight man/self-insert character for the target male audience, the girls are where a lot of the attention is at. One component to this is how many secrets and abilities lay hidden within each girl’s character. As we’ve progressed through the season, we’ve learned that every girl has a bit more going on behind the scenes, with components to their past adding into the crazy world of Love Tyrant. But this is where the series suffers a major problem: Much of these twists, abilities, and components to this world aren’t properly introduced. When starting Love Tyrant, it feels like it’s supposed to be a fairly average, real world setting, but with the surprise addition of angels and demons. However once we’re introduced to Stolas, and later Akane and Yuzu’s various ‘super powers,’ no one seems to bat an eye at any of this, as if they’re normal components to the world.
Linny: Sure, the show started off extremely other worldy with a shinigami who turns out to be a cupid/angel with a magical notebook that makes people fall in love. However like Tom mentioned, it felt like everyone else were just ordinary humans with over the top personalities and maybe some inhumane strength/speed for comedic purposes. However, the show then starts to throw in Stolas, the penguin hellset on molesting Akua without any prior mention or set up, and then throws in psychopathic, sadistic Shikimi with supernatural abilities and it turns into utter chaos and madness, and not in the good way. It’s all too random and too sudden and likely to leave some audiences reeling from the pandemonium onscreen.
Tom: This increasing ‘random’ aspect to the way the series introduces various world building elements means so much is still shrouded in mystery and not the good kind. It becomes more confusing than funny, giving the entire series a ‘lawl so random’ element that’s going to severely limit its audience to people who bask in their love of ‘random level’ comedy. And while I’m sure the series isn’t entirely random in its world building, there have been some very, very, very subtle hints, it still very much feels like anything could be added to the series at a moment’s notice, without any concern for continuity or set up.
Linny: The humour in Love Tyrant really gets affected by this acceleration in randomness. Quickly, the jokes start to feel too try hard and even repetitive as they try to build upon all the new elements and sacrifice proper exposition. However, I will concede that Love Tyrant still has some enjoyable humour. For example, it has a running gag about a same sex couple that Guri hooks up using her magical notebook for shits and giggles early on, but then their relationship is maintained and featured every now and then throughout the show. There’s also the fact that while it does the fourth wall breaking light beams censorship joke, it points out that in the case of Love Tyrant, people in the room can still see all the naughty bits, standing out from other shows who did similar gags.
Tom: What really makes or breaks Love Tyrant, however, is going to be its humor. Setting aside the rape penguin stuff, or the half-hearted way in which Love Tyrant builds its’ increasingly bizarre world, Love Tyrant’s humor is extremely hit or miss. We said as much in our preview. What saved it in the first episode was how fast the pace of that first episode was, allowing gag after gag to fly at the audience and even if half, or two-thirds failed to land that lefty plenty to still enjoy. But now that the series has settled down, and even slowed the pacing of its episodes, the gags aren’t flying fast enough to hide its hit or miss elements.
Linny: Love Tyrant has fun elements but it’s also frantic and frenzied as it throws new and random characters and powers at you without any proper exposition, zero rhyme or reason other than ‘lol random’. Now if you’re fine with that, or even enjoy it when a show just focuses on being random and ridiculous, Love Tyrant could easily worm its way to your heart. However, with the lack of exposition and too many random elements constantly being introduced, there’s a high chance you’ll just be left confused and disengaged.
Tom: Love Tyrant has some fun ideas, but I’m increasingly unsure any of them amount to a truly engaging ongoing series. The Kiss Note idea gets less and less screen time as other elements come in over it, such as hints about Akane’s family or Yuzu’s powers, etc. It’s almost as if the creator realized he couldn’t possibly carry a Death Note gag for more than a few chapters. Whatever the case, what’s here is increasingly unfunny and seemingly random in nature. It’s best left to fans of that kind of comedy.