First Impressions: Maid Sama

Bossing guys by day, serving guys by night.

How will she keep this secret?

Hello and happy December, fellow otakus! In case you couldn’t tell by my late hour posting this, I’m finally back in real-time, now that NaNoWriMo is over. If you’re super curious you can read all about how my first year of participation went in tomorrow’s Procrastinator’s Project Journal, but the long and short of it is: I won! Huzzah for me! But enough about that. Now it’s time for a short and sweet first impression on episode one of a popular shoujo called Maid Sama.

Misaki: Fake it 'til ya make it. Personally I'd hate the job, but love the outfit.

Misaki Ayuzawa is the hard-working class president of a high school that was, until recently, an all-boys school. She’s a tough prez because the boys have been slovenly, gross, and disrespectful of the new female students, so she works very hard to keep them in line as well as be a model student. Matter of fact, Misaki admits that she pretty much hates guys. When she returns to her dilapidated house we learn why: her father up and left one day, leaving her mother, sister, and herself in a mountain of debt. The house is falling apart and her mother is ill, so to help make ends meet Misaki works in a maid café in the next town over called Maid Latte. She would be embarrassed if any of the boys whom she bosses around at school found out that she has to go to work in a cute maid outfit and call patrons “Master.” So of course…

Takumi the masochist only likes the girls who hate him. He's in for a world of hurt.

Takumi Usui is one of the cutest and most popular boys at Misaki’s school. Girls regularly confess their love for him, but because this happens so frequently he’s lost interest in girls. Misaki catches him breaking one girl’s heart and states that she hates him, as well as all boys who make girls cry. One night as she’s taking the trash out back at Maid Latte, Takumi walks by and spots her. After work he’s still waiting to confirm that he really saw her, so she explains her situation to him. Over the next few days she’s positive that he must have told everyone at school her secret, but thankfully, he didn’t. Instead he keeps coming back to Maid Latte, ordering coffee, and staring at Misaki, which she hates. Fast forward to another night on the job, and Misaki is sick but doesn’t want to take time off of work. She takes out the trash again, only this time three thuggish boys from her school see her. They start to harass her, but Misaki is too weak to fight back. Luckily Takumi steps in and saves the day. The episode ends with Misaki thanking Takumi and asking how she can repay him. He requests that she become his personal maid for one day.

Misaki's pals discuss Takumi: Y'know ladies, there's actually no such thing as "too popular to like girls." Usually that just means he's... oh never mind, they'll find out in college.

This is another excellent shoujo anime, one which I’ve had recommended to me several times but never had the chance to check out before now. I’m very glad that I finally have the chance! Misaki is strong and pretty, yet relatable, which makes her an excellent heroine. Takumi, while cool, never comes off as a total dick. I love that this episode jumps right into the good stuff from the get-go: already we have a love connection at work, as well as a dreamy rescue scene, and several hilarious parts. The scene in which Misaki is walking down the hall and keeps imagining that everyone is saying “maid” cracked me up, and I can tell from the preview for the next episode that it will be chock-full of laughs and romance as well. So far there’s nothing particularly groundbreaking about Maid Sama, but it is an excellent example of classic shoujo, and I very much look forward to watching the rest of the series.

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