Ah, Inu x Boku SS. I actually finished this series yesterday, but I decided that it would be best to wait a day to write this thing because all I would have written (fangirled) about yesterday is the amazing ending. Anyways, this show was the only one that I was actually planning on watching when I saw the winter season line up because I thought the animation was really beautiful, and I took one look at the cover image and series description and began creating images of a blossoming romance between the two main characters, Ririchiyo and Miketsukami. Well, much to my disappointment, the tags for the show on MAL informed me that I was going to watch a comical supernatural shounen, meaning romance, if there was any, would only be sort of hinted at. Regardless, I was still looking forward to the series because of the pretty art and interesting concept with the whole reincarnation of demons thing (not to mention I could always ship who I wanted to). Unsurprisingly, I pretty much got what one would expect from this show after watching the first episode: pretty animation, some light fan service, mildly cookie-cutter, yet enjoyable side characters, and repetative comedy, making an overall cute show. The main characters, Ririchiyo Shirakiin and Soushi Miketsukami were what really made the show more what is initially appeared to be because of their interesting personalities and the dynamic they had together.
Inu x Boku SS revolves around Ririchiyo Shirakiin who is the descendent/reincanation of her demon ancestor who’s mated, at some point in the past, with a human. She has opted to move into a posh mansion by the name Ayakashi Kan where other people descended from various other demons live as well and are protected by a member a bodyguard who is like them. Ririchiyo is a tsunshun, meaning she acts in an aloof manner towards others, sometimes to the point of being rude, but later becomes depressed by her actions. This makes for an actually very endearing character because she genuinely felt horrible about the stuff she would say and honestly wants to overcome her problem. Our other main character is her perfect, devoted, and loyal bodyguard, Soushi Miketsukami. From the moment he showed up, I figured he was going to end up being the source of constant jokes with his teary-eyed devotion to his mistress and borderline stalker knowledge of her…I also figured he would become a love interest of sorts for our young heroine. What I really loved about these two were their interactions which were adorable to watch and made for a lot of the comedy in the show. The rest of the cast consists of the other Ayakashi Kan residents who are pretty predictable (the kind, wannabe delinquent; the silent, cute girl who eats like there’s no tomorrow; the mildly creepy girlophile), yet manage to be endearing in their own way which added to the charming nature of the show.
Now in terms of the tags I saw which influenced how I initially viewed the show, I have to say that someone on MAL should add slice of life to the tags because 96 percent of this show followed an episodic format with a slice of life atmosphere to it. A typical episode would involve Ririchiyo going around with the other members of Ayakashi Kan and slowly learning to make friends and coming out of her shell. This makes for a cute show, but a fairly boring one after a while because after a while, the show began to feel somewhat repetative. So, other than some earlier drama revolving around the SM fiance of Ririchiyo, the show basically continued in this slice of life manner with some vague hinting at Ririchiyo beginning to fall for Miketsukami. At this pace, I expected the series to end without much of a bang, turning out to be just another slice of life that didn’t really satisfy me, but entertained me. Well, that all went out of the window in the last three episodes. Those last three episodes made me think that this series would have been so much better if the whole series had been like them: drama filled with some action that concluded with a sweet romantic ending.
As for the other misleading tags you might see out there (coughMALcough): The supernatural aspect of the show was only kind of focused on, and took a back seat for most of the show. The supernatural origins were only focused on in terms of Ririchiyo and Miketsukami where we saw how they were treated as a result of them supernatural beings and how that affected them as people. In addition, the comedy only struck a cord with me when the jokes were revolving around Ririchiyo and Miketsukami because I thought they were sweet, playful, and cute. I’m also not particuarly sure where the shounen tag kicks in since this show turned out to be more shoujo in the end, not to mention there were probably a grand total of 4 fight scenes, most of them being over over in about ten seconds.
Now, this mini-arc, I suppose the best term would be, that made up the last three/four episodes of the series started off with Ririchiyo’s annoying fiance coming back to town, and I, honestly, was ready to shoot myself if I had to hear a whole episode of him and his categorizing everything as sadistic or masochistic. However, there was a considerable amount of drama that ensued during this episode, revolving around Ririchiyo and Miketsukami as Ririchiyo realized that she had fallen in love with Miketsukami and he appeared desperate to keep her fiance from telling her some secret. Things come to a climax when we learn about Miketsukami’s past through flashbacks and how he…really wasn’t that great of a person and was basically devoid of a real personality until he was instructed to write letters to Ririchiyo posing as her fiance. We learn that she helped him find himself really which explains his devotion and love for her. This tidbit about the letters comes out and Ririchiyo accepts it. The series concludes with Richiyo confessing her love to Miketsukami (with him obviously expressing his mutual feelings) and then we get a small showing of how adorable they are as a couple.
These last episodes really delved into the main characters and added some depth to them. We were able to see how much Ririchiyo had grown and how she had gained confidence in herself and learned to open up to people a bit, as well as see a more complex, darker side to her faithful companion though his past and how it affected him. Thinking back on the last episode, I think it ended perfectly and wrapped everything up in a manner which left me feeling fully satisfied and happy with the series despite its slow start. In the end, the ending was magnificent, while the beginning was slow and mildly boring. The main characters had a level of complexity and interesting-ness that keep you interested and wanting to watch the show, something that was somewhat lacking in the side characters. The animation was really beautiful with vibrant colors and smooth animation, while the music was nice with the OP being a nice piece that hinted at the darker and more hopeful tones in the series and the EDs being typically focused on one character which added variety. As for voice acting, I’m a pretty bad judge since I can’t tell if a voice in necessarily bad or brilliant, but I would say that the voices fit the characters pretty well and the seiyuu did a really nice job of bringing the characters to life. Overall, I would recommend this show to you if you’re looking for a sweet slice of life with some drama elements and a sweet romance with supernatural elements mixed in.
Overall Score: 7/10