The world is so full of injustice toward lilies, isn’t it? So Katie’s back from her month of moving and vacations and so forth to bring you a review! Our next one will be Attack on Titan because it has to be, but since I haven’t actually seen it yet (I know, yell at me in the comments. Anything to get away from the oodles of spam we get left) I decided to go with one that I happened to just be recommending to someone.
Enter Hide Yoshino (that name…), a high school girl who has really no desire to do anything. When asked about her plans for the future by her History teacher, little Yoshino says a career involving napping and sweets would be best. I think we can all relate to that. She also is failing History. Which means a lot to this particular history teacher because spoilers. Her teacher tells her that without serious studying and putting forth a lot of hard work, Yoshino won’t pass. Screw that. That’s not sleeping or sweets related at all! But poor little Yoshino is a little dim. Her friends tease her for not even realizing she was named after Hideyoshi.
So, in an effort to not put in any work at all, Yoshino goes to a temple and donates her last yen to get good fortune. But she’s also kinda klutzy and drops her coin. Coming up with a solution, she attempts to retrieve it only to be clumsy again and fall through a paper window into the temple, where she is enveloped by an odd blue light and Kagome – I mean Yoshino – is thrown back in time. In an odd twist, this Inuyasha moment is peppered with a little Wizard of Oz in that a lot of the major figures of the Sengoku era have been recast as her friends. And as women. Really gay women. On the left you’ll see this new, cooler, lesbiner Sengoku era.
She’s saved from a burning village by Mitsuhide. Mitsuhide, a cute nerdy girl with purple hair, takes her to see the busty and brawly Nobunaga who allows the strange Hideyoshi (get it? because Hide Yoshino! OH DID NOT SEE THAT COMING!) stay at her castle, mostly because she can’t stand seeing the inept little Hideyoshi cry. Which she does, because her cell phone doesn’t have signal in the Sengoku era (she’s really not that bright, but so damn cute(. Also because Nobunaga, afraid of the cell phone, conquers it. Armed with the ability to make a screen on a flip-phone light up and make noise and her history book (man, you’d think that’d make life easier), Hideyoshi sets out on a mission to make Nobunaga a more soft, kind figure suitable for ruling over Japan. By having a festival and a play among other things.
In case you were wondering if this show was going to be historically accurate, know that right now, as I write this, I am laughing. Laughing at you. But honestly, Hideyoshi is confused too, so don’t feel too bad. Though the title is brought into English as “Sengoku Otome: Time Paradox”, anyone with first-year Japanese can tell you the actual translation is “Sengoku Otome: Pink Paradox”. Guess they thought that was a little too nail-on-the-head.
The show is… generally more absurd than even that first episode rundown makes it sound. It manages to roll moe, Inuyasha-esque fantasy, an element of mystery (albeit one Hideyoshi eventually stops caring about and just sort of accidentally develops from there), comedy and just extreme historical inaccuracy into an odd little bundle. It’s absurd and crazy and kooky and remarkably fun. Just wait until you meet Masamune Date. There are a lot of questions about an alternate version of history where all this insanity ensues, like in a world where the only male is a samurai dog, an interesting question is where do babies come from? And rather than try to be self-important and take this pink paradox too seriously, Sengoku Otome just lets you laugh at the complete non-answers it provides.
As for the yuri content, it’s pretty much smacked in your face and shouted from the rooftops. I’m not giving you insightful analysis when I say they’re lesbians. Mitsuhide became Nobunaga’s retainer because she wanted to snuggle with those massive… armies. That’s one example, but literally every character has at least one other that they’re really in lesbians with. So overpoweringly true are my assessments here, that when collecting images for this article, Google was pretty sure yuri was something I was looking for.
I honestly love this series way more than I should. It’s twelve episodes and seems at times to be all over the place, like I’m not sure if the creators wanted action or comedy or moe or what genre they were going for. The strength of Sengoku Otome is it’s an entertaining enough ride, even with its weird turns down what I can only call filler, that it doesn’t at all bother me that I’m not sure where the hell I’ll end up, or if Hideyoshi is just going to be here now, or if any of the writers knew more about history than Yoshino did. What matters is that I had an obscene amount of fun with this improbable history. And hopefully you will too!
That’s all for now, my darlings~! It’s good to be back. Thanks as always to our friends at MangaDen for keeping the light on for us while I was out, and thanks to all of you! Our First Anniversary is coming up in a few months, do you have ideas how we should celebrate? Share them in the comments or Like us on Facebook and share your ideas there! And maybe Kero or Koala would like to draw some of the Sengoku Otome girls with their real-life counterparts? That’d probably be fun fanart to share!