Tag Archives: Ouran High School Host Club

(✿◠‿◠) Anime!!! – Ouran High School Host Club

List Item:  Watch the 100 Anime to See Before You Die
Progress: 46/100Title: Ouran High School Host Club
Episodes Aired: 26
Year(s): 2006

So, I was going to be starting one of the really old animes – but a week and a half ago I had such a stressful day at work that I opted to start something that would be more of a fluffy throwaway. Little did I know that I would end up falling for this silly little reverse harem series.

Let’s get the obvious out of the way first. Ouran High School Host Club is a show set in a high school for the children of the rich and powerful where some of the male students have set up a ‘host club’ – i.e. a place where girls pay to come and have some personal attention (like tea or a conversation) with a gorgeous boy. It’s not something I have ever heard of outside of Japanese media, so I think it’s a pretty localised phenomenon.

On the surface, this feels like a bit of a stupid and shallow show. The thing that it does brilliantly, however, is act as a clever satire of the entire genre. They openly play with the tropes of shows that are typically aimed at teen and young adult women whilst also playing with otaku culture and reversing a number of things you would typically see in regular harem shows.

It gives these, admittedly rich and pampered, students a whole lot of depth outside of the initial stereotypes that they fulfil. The young ‘lolita’ type boy who has rebelled against a family who demand machismo, the twins who are incest-bait where we find out slowly that one of them is trying to push the other towards independence and then the head of the harem who is probably the saddest of them all.

With these strong male harem members, you need a similarly strong female centre character to play off of them all – and with Haruhi (a girl who ultimately has no issues with playing with androgyny) they have one. As the poorer kid there on a scholarship, she’s a really great viewer surrogate who has plenty depth of her own and is far from being a Mary Sue.

I really want to track down the manga for this as I know there’s a few years of story that never got told in the anime. They left the show on a bit of a cliff-hanger with her having the possibility of being paired up with two members of the host club – and it never got resolved. For my own sense of closure, I’m going to have to track these down.

As for where this leaves me for my next anime I have no idea. I am still plowing through Dragonball with the husband, but we still have over 100 episodes to go before finishing that. I guess it might be time to start on Detective Conan so I am able to finish it off on my plane ride home from Korea. After all, we leave in 2-3 weeks and that show is massive.