017: Kobayashi-san Chi no Maid Dragon
AKA: Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid
Aired: Winter 2017
Genres: Comedy, Slice of Life, Fantasy
Date watched: Dec 16 2018 – Dec 16 2018
Series watched: Kobayashi-san Chi no Maid Dragon (14 ep x 24 mins)
Why I started watching: I heard it was similar to Hinamatsuri, but this one at least had a couple friend recommendations attached to it. I’m not sure if I was masochistic or simply looking for redemption by immediately going to a very similar one to my last show, though. I wondered how similar the shows would be.
As it turned out, quite a lot. The two anime feature outsiders, dragons in this case, coming to Earth and trying to figure out how to function in human society, as they move in and live with characters from the “real” world. However, while I strongly disliked Hinamatsuri, I loved Kobayashi-san. Tohru, the main character here, is a klutz like Hina, however she also has a friendly personality, and mixes being obedient to her maid duties with the independence and assertiveness to do things like shopping or visiting Kobayashi at work or preparing gifts for the neighbours. She also has a funny, capricious streak that makes her far more than just a doormat submissive maid or something. She’s a dragon, after all! This gives her far more of a well-rounded feel to her personality than Hina.
The next main dragon girl, Kanna (who strongly reminds me of Renge from Non Non Biyori), decides to go to school, which also invokes comparison to Hina as she has to hide her powers while making friends and figuring out school life. She does so in a much more likable way, so that the viewers are cheering her on instead of laughing at her obliviousness, with most of the humour instead coming from her extremely kawaii relationship with her best friend.
Things do take a slight dip here as the third and fourth dragon to arrive have their moments, but are mostly relegated to the background. While Fafnir’s arrangement is funny and wholesome too, Lucoa’s relationship with the family she lives with is rather fan-servicey in a way that made me uncomfortable, especially when it involves teasing the middle-school sorcerer boy who “summoned” her. However, that’s about all the blemish there is in the otherwise excellent character cast, and the viewer is soon introduced to a number of inside jokes and running gags that span the series.
While Hinamatsuri never really does the Slice of Life aspect that it advertises, except for a nice school trip episode, Kobayashi has a number of standard SoL scenes, from school events to kotatsu-huddling to sleepovers and festival celebrations and hot springs. They even put on a play that turned out very, very funny. This was the first anime that made me laugh so hard that I was crying from the exertion, right at the end of Chapter 5 with the magic trick. Coincidentally enough, after 40-ish shows, the only other show that has made me laugh until I cry has been Yuru Yuri, which also has an over the top theater play. But neither theater play was the scene that did the trick, even though both were really good!
The music track for the show was decent, though unfortunately neither song stuck with me positively enough to make it into my song stash. Still though, the show was an excellent comedy all-around, and definitely more than made up for the disappointment of Hinamatsuri for me. Despite slight reservations, it definitely still ended up a show that I would recommend to others for mostly wholesome laughs. The show wrapped up well enough, so I wonder if there ever will be a sequel?
Final Score: 10/10