The Maid I Hired Recently Is Mysterious
Having lost his parents in a car accident, Yuuri (last name unknown) finds himself the sole resident of his parents' home mansion after all the servants leave due to them being his parent's servants. Shortly after, however, a young woman named Lilith appears and offers to work as Yuuri's maid for free.
Having finished the show, I can't help but feel The Maid I Hired Recently Is Mysterious is maaaybe trying to oversell the mystery aspect a bit much for what we get here. Which is to say when you have a story about a young boy suddenly get a young woman named Lilith -- maybe one of the most stereotypical succubus names ever -- who promises to look after him, what would you expect to happen?
Well, whatever it is, I'm happy to report that nothing too untowards happens in this show. Without spoiling too much of her mysterious past, Lilith is indeed just a normal human being who is doing mostly household duties in service of the young boy, and that's about all she wrote. To make up for this lack of supernatural elements, Yuuki does indeed find his new charge quite mysterious. Why does she just suddenly appear like that? Why in the world would she actually not only accept a job for no pay, but even buy him gifts from time to time? And why.... does looking into her deep purple eyes make him feel so strange inside. It must be because she's up to something.
Much like how some people might have been worried that our main lead in Helpful Fox Senko-san would end up wanting more than a wholesome tail fluffing at any point in the show, I imagine people might be worried that Lilith would take a more active role in bringing forth those strange feelings in Yuuri's heart. Which would be a problem, mostly due to Yuuri's young age, but the show thankfully never goes there. To be clear, the show never makes it a secret that Yuuri is developing a crush on Lilith, but I'm not going to hold that against the show, as it's not out of the queston that a young boy on the cusp of growing up would become attached to a girl who basically becomes a positive influence in his life, but also isn't directly related to him. And Lilith's status as a potential seductor is also somewhat lessened when it becomes clear that, for all the times she's teasing him, she becomes strangely embarrassed and bashful when she realizes he is serious about the things he's experienced, even if he haven't grasped it fully himself.
Nevertheless, the show doesn't devolve into any kind of sexual fantasy, which is to the show's benefit. To be fair, Lilith isn't really raising Yuuri as much as taking care of the household itself. I can also understand why she would be fond of the young boy, as outside of his bouts of weird accusations, he is a polite and respectable young man. He does attend school, but doesn't seem to have any friends outside of fellow classmate Tsukasa Gojouin, whose parents were close to Yuuri's parents before their untimely departure. I suspected that they might have had something to do with how Lilith could afford working "for free" for the young boy, but that seems a bit uncertain as of the end of this season.
And yes, Lilith herself does have a past. There is indeed a reason why she chooses to go serve Yuuri as the household maid, and it's a.... reasonably mundane one as they tend to be. The show's main strength is also its biggest weakness; the general lack of conflict in the entirety of the show can make for a rather relaxing and serene view, but only if that's what you're in the mood for, so keep that in mind. Gotta want to go on that vacation, as Jason Huff once said about a different, equally conflict-light show. But more than that, her reaction to Yuuri's little outbursts are kind of adorable. She can tease, but she gets downright flustered when she realizes that he really means what he's saying, even if he doesn't fully understand himself. Even better, she doesn't really lead him on either. She basically does her job and looks after Yuuri without overstepping any boundaries.
Which brings us to the age difference, the main source of contention in The Maid I Hired Recently Is Mysterious. The show never outright states what the age of the characters are, which leaves me guessing at it. Yuuri is clearly on the cups of puberty, which means he's anywhere between 10 to 12 years old. Lilith herself is probably somewhere in the range of 16-18 years old; it's hard to tell, because I don't really know how labor laws work in Japan. If Lilith was just 16, would she be allowed to keep a full time job, labor-intensive ones in particular? The main question both you and I should ask ourselves is: would you (and I) accept a romantic relationship between Yuuri and Lilith, and the answer to that for me is "it depends". Not that I want to bang on about this for too long, especially since I've already said that you probably don't need to worry, but if the show can run the gamut of Yuuri figuring out that he's crushing heavily on his maid without doing anything more intimate about it, I think I can allow myself to let my guard down.
A more direct weakness of The Maid I Hired Recently Is Mysterious is in its comedy. The show is a little bit too in love with its main gag, which is only amusing for so long. Yuuri realizes he's attracted to his maid, mistakes it for her somehow working her magic on him and accuse her thereof. In doing so, he somehow unintentionally unloads some pretty romantic comments in her direction, which takes her off guard enough that she becomes flustered. It can be cute, sure, and occasionally amusing, but the thing about this show is that Yuuri's situation gives the show a nice starting point for some endearing light drama. For all Yuuri's bluster about having to grow up in a hurry when his parents die, it's clear that their absence has left a hole in his heart. The show never gets outright depressing, so in that sense, it's good that the show puts moments of levity to balance out the more serious moments. I just wish the show had a better sense of comedic timing in addition to better jokes.
To balance some of that out, we have the character of Tsukasa Gojouin. She and Yuuri was introduced to each other through their parents, and she's more than a bit reminiscent of a certain character in Card Captor Sakura who was also the best friend of the main character. Unlike the aforementioned character in CCS, however, she feels more like a joke character, there to be weirdly interested in the relationship between Yuuri and Lilith after she witnesses the bizarre conversation between Yuuri and Lilith near the school gate. Her initial reaction to said conversation is one of the few hilarious gags the show has, and her interest in having the two pursue her wild fantasies is almost like the show calling out the ones who might worry that this would actually happen. That being said, it's kind of nice that -- despite her role as a joke character -- she has his back, and while she's slightly more mature than Yuuri, she's also not one of those "too mature for her age" types, which lends the show its credibility if nothing else.
From a visual standpoint, the show is... weirdly ugly. Character designs are decent enough, and the animation of them are... OK, I guess. It's a bit hard to tell when a show is mostly chatty, but I didn't really notice anything too out there on movement. The only thing I can mention about animation aggravations is its heavy reliance on its heavy use of speed lines of the "in your face" variety whenever someone gets a little louder than average show norm. Lilith does have a rather appealing design, though, depending on what you like. She's a bit more tan than your typical anime character, and she does indeed have some gorgeous, deeply violet eyes. Her outfit isn't super fanservice-ish, but she sports just enough of a cleavage that you can see the little beauty mole near the top of her chest as well as the two underneath her right eye; it's mostly harmless, but for some reason, it's also a different maid outfit compared to the one she wore from before she entered the Yuuri household. The weirdest part of the whole visual aspect and the biggest fly in the soup is the bizarre way the backgrounds are made. The house and furniture in particular looks like a weird mixture of 3D graphics without any depth but with a weird filter put on it to give it a horrendously artificial coat of water-based paint that gives the show a coarse, raw feel, and then having various paper art cutouts placed on top of it like some kind of demented real-life art collage. I'm not sure if it was an attempt at a cost-cutting measure, but it has not worked in the show's favor.
In the end, The Maid I Hired Recently Is Mysterious is a decently tolerable show. It has a nice balance of light drama, could do better with its comedy, but feels sincere enough with the feelings on display that it never gets iffy. If you can stand the eyesore that is the background art and are out of other shows, The Maid I Hired Recently Is Mysterious really isn't that bad. Its main problem is that it has a lot of competition from, quite frankly, better shows.
A nice, relatively conflict-less slice-of-life whose main downside is a rough sense of comedic timing. — Stig Høgset
Recommended Audience: There is some mild fanservice of Lilith getting dressed that goes slightly farther than her mildly fanservice-ish maid outfit. Don't expect any nudity, though, and Lilith's mildly flirty teasing isn't even particularly inappropriate, even if the recipient is a young kid. I know I've probably abused the word "mild" in every respect here, but that's how the show is all the way through.
Version(s) Viewed: Digital stream on Crunchyroll, Japanese with English subs.
Review Status: Full (11/11)
The Maid I Hired Recently Is Mysterious © 2022 Silver Link.
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