Hello, Nitsuj here, and welcome to the side blog the blogs between the blogs. 2017 has definitely been the year of the monster girl. A large part of this is thanks to Monster Musume who got the ball rolling and the fact that these monster girl animes have been great. We got A Centaur’s Life which was okay and Kobayashi-san Chi no Maid Dragon was a huge success. But the best by far this year for me personally was Interviews with Monster Girls. Coming out at the start of 2017, Interviews with Monster Girls is based off a manga under the same name. It was written by Petos who started the manga in 2014 roughly 2 years after Monster Musume got started. A-1 Pictures (SAO and Magi) of all studios produced the anime and if I’m being honest it’s one of my favorite animes of the year so far. Let’s take a look at Interviews with Monster Girls.
Now the anime is like what the title says it is, interviews with monster girls. In this world demi-humans or demis as they prefer to be called, are being accepted into society. These demi-humans aren’t the result of another world being discovered but rather through simple birth. Both parents can be normal human beings but through some unexplained configuration of the child’s DNA, that child becomes a demi. In the series we follow of a man named Tetsuo Takahashi who is a biology teacher at a high school. He has an interest in demis because they’re a new breed and not that much is known about them. When he discovers that 3 of the students at his school are demis he calls them in for interviews in an attempt to understand them more and as he begins to understand them and their problems as both teens and demis he strives to help them out. The first demi is Hikari a vampire girl who is energetic and always sticks up for others in need, the second is Kyoko a dullahan girl who is only one of 3 dullahans in the world, and the third is Yuki a snow woman who a first hates her demi powers but learns to love them and is a manga enthusiast. These 3 are the main heroines in the series and I love each and every one of them. The girls are very relatable to the average high school girl. Not only do they have to deal with their everyday lives as teenagers but they also have to deal with their lives as demis. It’s not like Monster Musume where the girls are young adults and lived in their own tribes surrounded by people like them, the girls in this series live in present day Japan where there’s very few people like them in the entire world.
Where the anime really shines is with the interviews between the girls and Tetsuo. Tetsuo doesn’t dance around the issues and asks them the questions we would ask if we got the chance to sit down and talk to them and it’s through these interactions that we learn so much about them. We learn that despite being a vampire, Hikari likes garlic and can eat it without harming herself, she satisfies her blood urges by getting blood from the government or drinking tomato juice, she can walk in the sun, and she likes cool temperature. For Kyoko we learn that she has trouble making friends in school because she’s a dullahan, her head is literally separated from her body and it’s a little uncomforting for some people. Along with this, we discover that she can operate her body even if her head is far away from her body. For Yuki, we learn that she’s afraid that her powers will hurt others because she’s a snow woman and their powers have been known to hurt people. The questions never become too personal or uncomfortable for the girls, if anything, they find these questions interesting and actually helps them sort things out in their mind they might not have thought about before. It’s also through the interviews that Tetsuo finds a way to help them out in their school life. Two instances that come to mind is with Kyoko and her carrying a school bag. Because she has to carry around her head, carrying a school bag can be quite troubling for her so Tetsuo talked to the school about the situation for her and they allowed her to start using a bookbag which is much easier and safer for her to use. Another instance is with Sakie Sato who is a teacher at the school and depending on who you ask, the best girl in the show. Sakie, just like the other heroines is a demi as well, a succubus to be precise. You may think this is a good thing but in truth it’s a huge strain on her life. Because Sakie is a succubus she has to be very careful around other people as she’s afraid her powers will have an affect them. Just by removing a small layer of clothing or showing some skin she can excite someone and make them fall for her. Because of this she can’t have a meaningful relationship with the opposite sex as she’s not sure if the guy really likes her or if it’s just her powers at work. On top of all this she can’t live in apartment complexes either. She actually lives out in the country far away from people where every day she gets up early, takes the first train to the city to avoid rush hour and then takes the last train home to avoid crowded trains. All of this, in order to protect herself and others. While Tetsuo (who Sakie and Kyoko actually develop feelings for) has some resistance to her succubus powers, we see how her powers have some effect on him and he has to hold himself back from giving into his male instincts. Tetsuo has become her first real meaningful relationship with the opposite sex and has helped give her hope that she can have a relationship with a male.
The show’s underlying theme is the difficult and sometimes frightening experience it can be for one to integrate themselves into society (something I think we all deal with at some point in our lives). Like I said before Sakie has it tough being a succubus and the other heroines have it tough being a vampire, dullahan, and snow woman but they press on and do their best to live their lives all while facing their problems as girls in high school (a time that many of us would say was the hardest point in our lives) and demis. The show just has that heartwarming cute slice of life feel to it that’s not too cute, not over the top, has it’s funny moments as well as heartfelt moments, and very subtle with its message. Throughout the anime I found myself cheering for each of the girls and my care for them growing each episode. As far as romance goes the romance in this series is there but not a major focus in the overall story. Both Sakie and Kyoko have a secret crush on Tetsuo. Sakie because he’s a caring man who’s able to resist her succubus powers and have a normal relationship with her and Kyoko because of his kindness and how much he helps her out. If I had to be honest I found Kyoko’s crush a little disturbing due to the age difference but I started to view it as admiration for Tetsuo for everything that he does for her. As for Sakie, I think they would make a great match. A majority of the funny moments come from Hikari whether it’s her just being herself or fooling around with her twin sister (who is human) but also some of the best moments come from her. Out of all the demis Hikari is the only one who really has no concerns about what she is or problems. She’s proud to be a vampire and lives everyday happy with this fact. One of the best moments in the anime is when she confronts some gossiping girls in the bathroom who were badmouthing Yuki and she just straight up owns them.
The animation is meh. They try to make the main characters stand out by making them slightly brighter and have more life to them but it comes across as forced and there aren’t scenes where the animation really shows off. Luckily, the animation really doesn’t matter as the anime is more focused on the characters, their interactions off each other, and the world around them. The music is also pretty meh. Not bad but not really good either.
The final score for Interviews with Monster Girls is a very strong and solid 8/10 with a much watch stamp of approval. I enjoyed this anime way more than I thought I would and I’m glad this went above and beyond my expectations. If Monster Musume is too ecchi for you, this anime is a good alternative to it. With animes like Monster Musume and this shining the spotlight on the monster girl genre, it’s fair to say that we’ll be seeing a lot more animes involving monster girls. Some will be ecchi while others will be clean and centered around the characters and their interactions with the world and the people in it. Either way, I welcome both and I look forward to the next monster girl anime. Thanks for reading and I’ll see you next time on Project Nitsuj.
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