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[Homeroom Affairs box art (NOTE: out of print)]
AKA: 他人の関係 (Tanin no Kankei)
Genre: Adult romantic comedy
Length: OAV, 2 episodes, 45 minutes each
Distributor: VHS from Star Anime Enterprises out of print
Content Rating: R (sexual innuendo and situations, nudity, mild violence)
Related Series: N/A
Also Recommended: Maison Ikkoku, My Dear Marie, Please Teacher
Notes: Based on the manga by Arima Ichirou. The North American release of this anime is one of the rarest releases on the market, having been licensed by the now-defunct Star Anime Enterprises.
Rating: Four StarsFour StarsFour StarsFour Stars
 

Homeroom Affairs

Synopsis

Ehara Tokiro is a twenty-six-year-old rookie teacher who gets his first job at the most elite girls-only high school in Tokyo. On his way to his first day he encounters a rather saucy, albeit very pretty high school senior named Hase Miyako who is not as innocent as he first assumes her to be. Both are shocked and more than a bit embarrassed to find that she is also one of his homeroom students! Her embarrassment and shock doesn't last long, and soon Miyako begins to put the moves on the easily flustered teacher, who, of course, happens to be a virgin...he's never even been kissed! And if things couldn't get any worse (better?) for him, Miyako's father places her in his care! Will Ehara and his career survive the irrepressible presence of Miyako?


Review

Ah, yet another example of looks being deceiving. To read the box art (and warning labels), Homeroom Affairs seems like yet another hentai wannabe that is better left for the Pink Pineapple crowd, which is a shame.

Homeroom Affairs is simply ... darling! Yes, it IS an ecchi comedy, but Affairs has much more in common with My Dear Marie or HBO's Dream On series than it does with La Blue Girl or even U-Jin Brand. Miyako is uninhibited, but she's certainly no slut! In fact, she's downright adorable. She teases and seduces Ehara-sensei not because she's sex-starved, but because she knows it pushes his buttons, and that he's far too noble and shy to even think of touching her. Well, so Ehara-sensei does think of it, but he doesn't act on it. Funny enough, you can tell when Ehara-sensei is fantasizing about her by virtue that Miyako is *wearing* clothes in his dreams! A very funny, clever twist indeed.

Affairs is a romance, pure and true. You really hope that Miyako and Ehara-sensei do hook up, and not just to 'do it', but because they really do make a cute couple. Miyako is outgoing almost to a fault, but she does take care of Ehara-sensei, who is a bit of a doormat, but unlike most males in anime of this sort, he isn't out to take advantage of her. In fact, he is always rejecting her advances. He doesn't want to give in because he actually has respect for her, and believes that deep down she really is a nice girl who would much rather have someone who would treat her decently than to bed her every chance he gets ... an assessment that is dead on. Miyako's father notices this as well, and it does make sense that he would entrust her to him. In the first OAV we find out that Mr. Hase has lost his business and can no longer take care of his daughter. He sees how much Ehara-sensei really does care about her well-being, and almost literally signs her away to him. He does this not so he can easily abandon her, but so he can feel better knowing that at least if all else fails, his daughter will be all right.

Things don't always go smoothly for Miyako and Ehara ... for starters, there's Miyako's ex-boyfriend Kou, a street tough who is very jealous and wants Miyako back, and the principal of the high school who wants Ehara fired and Miyako expelled once he finds out they have been living together. Through their problems, they stick together and help one another out, and Miyako calms down just a little as she realizes that she's fallen in love. And the ending ... I won't give it away, but I will say that you'll be cheering right along with all of Miyako's classmates.

The animation is surprisingly well-done, and slightly above average. The character designs are cute, and remind a bit of Rumiko Takahashi's style a bit. Ehara-sensei looks a lot like Godai from Maison Ikkoku (I wonder if that was coincidental ... Maison and Affairs do have some common themes, but I doubt Kyoko went after Soichiro in quite the same way ^_^;;;) The music is understated but very appropriate: soft classical piano that highlights rather than distracts from key scenes. Best of all are the characters. I adore Miyako and Ehara. They really are a perfect couple! In the end, even Kou didn't seem like all that big of a lout anymore. The series was short, but it did a great job of fleshing out even the most minor of characters, and there is not a single one I didn't like.

Despite all of this, Homeroom Affairs is indeed for sixteen and over, as the box art warns. Miyako is not at all ashamed to show herself off, and she does so MANY times. But that's all she does. It is implied that yes, she did sleep around a bit before she met Ehara-sensei, but in the video nothing happens. Aside from a couple of back shots of both Ehara and Miyako, there is no below the belt nudity or actual sex at all. It's all innuendo, and yes, at times erotic, but never is it patronizing or degrading. Homeroom Affairs is a comedy for adults, not an "adult video". (Yes, there is a difference.) It would be right at home in a late night cable TV lineup. Sad thing is, Homeroom Affairs is so short ... I really wish there was more of it. It's one of the sweetest, funniest romances I've seen in a long while. Homeroom Affairs, alone or paired up with My Dear Marie, would be ideal watching for any mature couple wanting to spend a romantic night at home watching videos. If you like romantic comedies but are looking for something with a bit more spice to it, definitely give Homeroom Affairs a try. I highly recommend it!

A surprising treat. Take away three stars if you're looking for any hentai at all in this series. (Shame on you!) — Christi

Recommended Audience: The box says 16+, and it's dead on. Miyako's penchant for stripping and numerous sexual innuendoes and situations make this a no-no for the little ones. Guys renting this video for its supposed "hentai" factor, however, will be severely disappointed. There is no graphic depiction of sex and only three implied scenes of it, but nothing is shown onscreen.



Version(s) Viewed: VHS, Japanese with English subtitles
Review Status: Full (2/2)
Homeroom Affairs © 1994 Ichiro Arima / JC Staff / JAM Creation
 
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