Sunoharasou no Karinrin-san – Eps. 1-3 (First(ish) Impressions)

I decided to focus on what’s officially simulcasted first from this season onward so that’s why I never got around to Sunoharasou no Karinrin-san until now. To be honest, I’m kind of stunned this anime didn’t get picked up at all. It’s not like this is hentai or anything…

This anime seems wholesome if you ask me. It follows Aki Shiina (Eri Kitamura), a young boy who’s gotten tired of being mistaken for a young girl. Hoping to re-establish his identity as a mature man, Aki moves to Tokyo to study at a new school and lives under a lodging house. Much to his the proprietor of the building, Ayaka Sunohara (Rina Satou), treats him like a mother would to her child. She cuddles him, cheers him on…shoves her enormous boobs at him, joins him in the bath, and makes him sleep next to her. You know, all appropriate things a mother figure should do! There’s also some other residents in the building, all closer to Aki’s age and all possessing a conscious or subconscious tendency to put the poor boy in compromising situations that his puberty-driven brain can barely handle.

….What was I talking about again?

Okay yeah, this anime is pretty stinking naughty. It reminds me a bit of Miss Kobayashi‘s Dragon Maid in that you have an otherwise wholesome premise that decides to instead indulge in the lewd comedy you can derive from it. In fact, it kind of feels like if you gave Shota and Lucoa’s relationship its own entire anime (and also made Lucoa a human…). It was that kind of similarity in tone and sense of humor that got me a bit curious about Sunoharasou. I’m not sure if the execution is there though.

Maid Dragon does get lewd but it was nevertheless a fun time and a riot and it knew when to really hit you with the feels at just the right moments. Sunoharasou, meanwhile, has its cake and eats it too. You think there’s something sweet happening between Aki and Sunohara and then a few seconds later, you feel that someone should call the cops on the caretaker. For example, there’s a scene at the end of Episode 1 where Aki is feeling nervous about his first day in school and Sunohara pretends to be a student to boost his confidence. It’s a sweet scene up until it gets naughty when the caretaker asks the young boy if he likes older or younger girls, the latter answers with the former, and the former starts to strip as if that’s the natural thing to do. There’s also one scene where she cheers Aki with his studies by wearing one of those “sexy” Halloween costumes you can get online and another, where she forces him to sleep next to her. In general, some of the stuff that transpires in this show is accidental, other times you’re convinced Sunohara has an “agenda” with her new resident.

While some restraint would be much appreciated, I will admit that the chemistry between the characters isn’t half-bad. There are times where Sunohara acting as a motherly figure in Aki’s life does across as sweet and I like how Aki tries to help her with any housework as a show of appreciation. The third episode emphasizes his interactions with the other residents and there was some charm to be had there. Both Yuzu (Natsumi Takamori) and Yuri (Yume Miyamoto) were pretty entertaining in their own ways though my favorite has got to be Sumire (Asami Seto). I just really enjoyed the big sister, little brother dynamic she develops with Aki. A shame that Sumire (Asami Seto) starts off stalking the poor kid, presents an upskirt to him, and later tasks him to take her clothes off so that she get into her PJs. I guess the heart is there, this show just has an inconsistent way of showing it.

Despite being three episodes into this show, I’m still indecisive over whether or not I want to keep watching this show. It does have some enjoyable moments but the naughty edge the show has in general either feels distracting or downright crass. There is always the possibility that I’ll just get used to its shtick (I did with Maid Dragon) or that I’ll watch this out of my continued disbelief over where anime can take me. Regardless, I’ll watch it for a little bit longer.

OP: “Bitter Sweet Harmony” by Megumi Nakajima

ED: “Sonna no Boku Ja Nai” by Shino Shimoji

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4 thoughts on “Sunoharasou no Karinrin-san – Eps. 1-3 (First(ish) Impressions)

  1. I had the same immediate impression of comparing to Lucoa x Shota while reading different reviews (plus all of your screen caps tell that obvious connection)
    I didn’t really enjoy the Lucoa moments, so I’d probably pass this one even if there may be themes to explore in this one, haha.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I had no problem with the Lucoa scenes though I’ll admit that the only time she got me rolling on the floor was the Sports Day episode when Shota had to find something “world class”.

      And that kind of speaks to Sunoharasou’s problem. That kind of character is what this show is largely banking on and that’s more likely to be a dealbreaker for a lot of people. No one will blame you if you pass on this one lol.

      Liked by 1 person

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