This could be the sweetest, most ridiculous anime ever made! The name says it all. It’s about a dragon who becomes a maid for Miss Kobayashi! It’s cute, heartfelt, silly, borderline ecchi at times, and so much fun! Season 2 coming July 2021!!
It’s about dragons! And one of them becomes a maid! And they all live with different people! They all get jobs! One of them goes to school!
As Saitama says: chotto matte.
What the hell?
Yep, there’s dragons. They all can take human form, imagine that. They retain some of their dragon characteristics. Most of them keep their horns and tails unless they’re out and about in public, where they suddenly can hide them. But to a dragon, they all keep their reptilian eyes. It’s so much fun!
The dragon characters are headlined of course by Tohru. Sweet and silly and plump and pretty, she wants nothing more from her life now than to serve as Miss Kobayashi’s live-in maid. It confuses even Kobayashi how we get from the chance meeting in the forest to maid status. But so what? It’s hilarious! Tohru adores Kobayashi. She probably doesn’t know what “yuri” is, but that aside. It’s so much fun watching her love on Kobayashi, as she learns to live a new life as a human in a new world. Cutesy maid outfit and orange eyes, she exudes love and life and fun and feeling.
Kobayashi is the object of Tohru’s fantasies. Poor Kobayashi. She lives a droll single lifestyle that she’s more or less come to accept, working her days away as a programmer and drinking away her evenings. It’s through that drinking that she meets Tohru. Drunk Kobayashi is just a wee bit crazy. Hence, upon missing her stop on the train one night, in her drunken state, she wanders out into a forested area and meets the wounded dragon Tohru. She converses with her and coaxes her to drink with her right then and there, and soon after invites Tohru to come live at her apartment. She’s so drunk she barely knows what’s happening, and indeed when she wakes up in the morning and doesn’t remember anything, and Tohru is standing in front of her apartment in dragon form, she’s dumbfounded. So much laughs!
Drunk Kobayashi has one key defining aspect: she’s a maid fanatic! She idealizes maids in her drunken mind and is very serious about what she expects from them. I do not know why or how one becomes this way, but Miss Kobayashi has become obsessive about maids. Even not drunk she has opinions about it. But when she is drunk, she will give you her unvarnished views on all things meido! Hence through the windings of their drunken discourse Tohru decides that night to work as a maid for Kobayashi, and we’re off and running.
One thing Kobayashi did not anticipate was motherhood. Wait, she didn’t anticipate having a dragon as a maid either. So why not have a dragon as a kid? The kawaii-est of the kawaii, Kanna-chan invades Kobayashi and Tohru’s life very early in S1, and from there on captures the heart of every living thing that’s ever watched this show. Her muffled loli tone and limited vocabulary combined with her cute appearance and childish love of cute things make her so adorable. She’s probably the most recognized little girl character in the last decade for sure, and perhaps beyond that even. Yes, she basically ends up being Kobayashi’s little girl. While she can completely take care of herself–she is a dragon of many years after all–she undertakes the life a human little girl with complete commitment. She plays games, watches anime, goes to school, eats sweets, and makes friends. She goes to school just because she wants to. I seriously doubt she needs it! She’s so sweet. The characters in this show are all a lot of fun, but I think this show is what it is only because of Kanna. She takes it to a whole new level of fun and cuteness!
The other dragons are far from central to the show but are fun and unique in their own ways. Lucoa is…well, more mature than the rest I’ll say, in one way at least. Elma is fun if a little bit overshadowed in the show. It’s funny how she goes to work at the same place as Kobayashi, while obviously knowing nothing about what to do. She’s always eating. So weird. Then the only male dragon character (not counting the brief appearance of Tohru’s father) is Fafnir. Very disinterested and tsundere, it’s funny how he takes to Takiya and to gaming. Most of his dialogue is grunting in feigned disinterest.
Overall there’s not ever much to any of the characters. But there doesn’t have to be. It’s dragons living in the our world as people and getting along with everyone. What more could you want?
I love the artwork in this show. It’s definitely not chibi-style, but the faces are all round like that. Sometimes when I watch this show I muse about what the characters would look like with more traditional faces. And it just makes me laugh. Because nothing needs to change about the way these characters look. They are exactly as the should be!
In Tohru’s round face are two beautiful orange eyes. If you thought it would look weird having reptilian eyes in a chibi face, you’d be wrong in this case! She’s so remarkably memorable, anybody who knows anything about anime knows Tohru from Kobayashi on sight. Yellow golden hair, lively pink cheeks, mouth constantly in motion, and her super fun maid outfit round out this adorable character.
Kanna sports all pink and purple and white. The cutest blue eyes adorn her round little head, with white hair with a hint of pink framing her childish face. I’m never really sure what all components make up her outfit, but there’s lots of frills and balls and all manner of cute stuff. Everything about her is as cute as cute can be. This design and execution deserves awards.
All the female dragons have one thing in common with their design. They all have little bits of bright coloring at the tips of their hair. Tohru’s is orange, Kanna’s is pink, Elma has reddish-purple, and Lucoa has rainbow coloring. It’s most notable on Luoca and Kanna, but I really like Elma’s look. Black hair with the color at the tips and the most beautiful blue eyes in the middle of it all. I hope we get to see a little more of her in S2.
Poor Kobayashi. She’s so droll and plain on the exterior. I love her design. She really is supposed to be unremarkable, but I can’t think of a more memorable unremarkable character. All the faces she has to pull with all her ins and outs with Tohru are hilarious. They’ve got her wearing a white dress shirt and tie most of the time, and you honestly could mistake her for a guy if you weren’t careful. Some of the characters do make that mistake, and it makes for some awkward moments of laughter!
Everything is bright and cute and lively. I would never call this art ordinary, but I will hesitantly describe it as somewhat typical of this kind of zany comedic anime. Not a lot of sharp edges anywhere, almost zero shadowing, and almost every scene takes place in ample lighting. If I had to say something artsy about this artwork, I would say that this is just another great example of how anime can portray something very human in a fantastical way that bears minimal resemblance to human form. Yet we can experience very human feelings with these characters. The art in this series does a great job with this once again.
There really isn’t much to the story! It’s clever, but there’s not much to it. I already told how Kobayashi and Tohru get together. After that there isn’t anything to it other than a light theme regarding Tohru living here in a new world, separated from her previous life. A little weird bit about life-span misalignment creeps into the show at one point. Obviously Tohru is very old, yet by human standards she’s a young lady, and so she will live many, many more years. Kobayashi of course is human, with human lifespan. It’s kind of sad when they bring this up, but thankfully it doesn’t last long. We agree with Tohru and Kobayashi that we simply want these two to go on living together while they can, living in the moment.
But other than that, this show is completely episodic. They encounter different scenarios in their daily life together, and it spawns comedic or heartfelt moments throughout it all. It’s hardly worth mentioning, but this is the appropriate way to handle this kind of show. It’s all about the characters and showing them off, both through art and acting and dialogue and development. The story should just lend itself to that purpose without making a nuisance of itself in the process. And it does that very well.
This show is tons of fun, and is light and easy to watch. If you’re busy watching Berserk or Tokyo Ghoul or Your Lie in April and you just need a break, this is a great choice to pull out and spend a couple of episodes with Kobayashi and Tohru. It’s not so zany that your sides will hurt, but it is always lighthearted. It will prod your emotions gently, usually to laugh or occasionally cry, just enough to make it heartfelt without getting you physically or emotionally over-involved with it. That didn’t quite sound right now that I’m re-reading it, but I’ma go with it anyway!
But when season 2 comes, I won’t be using this to break from more serious shows. I will be watching this the moment I wake up or the moment it simulcasts, whichever comes first. It will have first priority that day!
Go get you some dragon you guys. You won’t regret it!