So, word is that season two of the anime adaptation of Ore no Imōto ga Konna ni Kawaii Wake ga Nai (My Little Sister Can’t Be This Cute; officially released as Oreimo) has been announced. A lot of people think it’s some sort of April Fools joke, but that’s obviously not the case for anyone who knows anything about the industry. Now, I loved season 1, so I should be happy about this, but I’m finding myself unable to actually smile after the trouble I’ve run into obtaining season 1’s official English release.
So, while I originally thought I’d have trouble picking the topic for my first blog post of substance, I will be writing about Oreimo.
Now, I’m sure quite a few of you looked at the title of the anime in question and immediately assumed that it was some random series about incest, and some people go into rants about how this series is proof about how anime has gone into the gutter upon seeing that title. If you were about to, please stop yourself right now and avoid looking like a complete idiot.
The story of Oreimo follows a high school student by the name of Kyousuke Kosaka and his little sister, Kirino Kosaka, who he hasn’t spoken to in years. While Kyousuke doesn’t have much of note about him as the series starts, Kirino is a popular model, the star of her middle school’s track team, an honour student, etc. But, one day, Kyousuke finds an anime disc on the floor of his house, and eventually finds out it belongs to Kirino. Turn’s out Kirino is secretly an otaku who likes moe anime and eroge, specifically about little sisters (Kyousuke is kicked out of her room when he asks the obvious question that raises). Kirino is initially afraid of her secret getting out, but Kyousuke says he won’t tell anyone. Kirino decides to take this opportunity to ask his brother for “life counselling” to deal with issues that have arised from her trying to juggle everything while hiding her love for anime and eroge, and the story follows exactly that.
Not what you were expecting, huh? To be perfectly honest, blatant incest wouldn’t fly on Japanese television. The series is good, so I suggest you check it out if you haven’t yet. The anime adaptation sold over 10000, which is amazing for anime. The only reason season 2 has taken so long was because they needed more Light Novels to come out, or they’d run out of content.
But wait! I just said season 1 was hard to get, didn’t I? Well, yes, as of this writing, the only non-counterfeit copy on the internet appears to be this Amazon listing for $2000. Good luck. :p
On a more serious note, 12 of the series’ 16 episodes are on Crunchyroll for your viewing pleasure. But what if you want to see the other four? Or what if you’re like me and want to be able to buy series you like to support the industry? Well, too bad. Unless you like pirating, you can’t get it anymore without paying that $2000. I should note that the release by Aniplex USA was only 5-6 months ago (for $60), but they only released a DVD version, and only as a Limited Edition. In other words, you can’t get it legally anymore. I asked Aniplex through an e-mail if they had any interest in releasing a standard edition. I’ve yet to recieve a reply, but I’ll wait until a full business week passes before I can get reasonably angry at that.
I’m sure most of you don’t want to drop $2000 for 16 episodes. I sure don’t. I’d be able to get every single other remaining series on my anime backlog with that money (aside from a few that you can’t get, period). However, the seller is fully justified in having that price tag. After all, nobody else has it. There’s nobody to compete with, and I’m sure most who actually have it don’t want to part with it for any cheaper than that, either.
But this is what happens when an anime series is released as a Limited Edition only. If Aniplex is smart, their inevitable release announcement of season 2 will come with a standard edition announcement of season 1. Otherwise, I doubt very many people will buy their release of season 2, having missed season 1. And rightfully so, since the four episodes not on Crunchyroll that are in the official DVD release follow the Light Novels to cover a volume’s worth of content. Season 2 probably won’t go back and cover that stuff, so this leaves non-piraters with a gap in the story they can’t remedy without breaking the law.
This post may not sound like too much of a rant (unlike what the tags say), but I’ll save it for when I talk about Aniplex USA’s business practices in general somewhere down the line.