Heroine Tarumono! Kiraware Heroine to Naisho no O-Shigoto

Title:Heroine Tarumono! Kiraware Heroine to Naisho no O-Shigoto
Heroines Run the Show
Heroines Run the Show: The Unpopular Girl and the Secret Task
Keywords: , , , , ,
Notables: Animation - Lay-duce
Hiyori Suzumi has come to Tokyo from a small town to participate in the track program at Sakuragaoka high school. She had no idea why dark blue haired Yujiro Someya and blond Aizo Shibasaki, who she sits between, seem to be worshipped by all the other girls. It turns out that they are the two singers of a popular high school idol group known as Lip x Lip. They are supposed to be perfect matches for each other, but Hiyori can't help getting the impression that they actually hate each other and are obnoxious to her. Needing some money, she successfully interviews for a job as an assistant manager--and guess who she'll be managing.

12 episodes
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This show seems to have a sort of goofy tone to it, owing to Minori's country naivete about idols and stuff like that. I figured that this would no doubt work to her advantage, because while most girls would gladly die for the two hunks of Lip x Lip, she will probably consider them to be overrated and nothing special, at least as individuals. We meet a large cast of characters in episode one, which suggests a fairly complex plot lies ahead. It was too soon to say if this show would be very good, since the premise has just barely been revealed, but Hiyori is likable. Of course there's no way in hell that a totally inexperienced girl like Hiyori would really be hired to manage such hot property, but at least a semi-plausible excuse is provided, which I appreciate. In total, I was modestly encouraged.

In episode two Hiyori gets started as an assistant manager, a position which carries little status and which she must learn on the job. She makes a sort of a bet with these two arrogant guys that she can master her task and make them admit that. She finds that they are actually a good deal different from the image they project to their fans. This episode didn't excite me as much as episode one did, but I enjoyed it nevertheless. I sympathize with Hiyori and hope she will win this bet she has made. In episode three Yujiro and Aizo learn about Hiyori's admirable determination to be a competitor in track and field, and they soften somewhat. In fact, they soften enough that I began to wonder if the main conflict of this series might be something other than her fighting to teach them some humility and earn their respect. It looks like two friends of Hiyori (shown in the illustration above) will also play a significant part. In episode four we learn that both Yujiro and Aizo have some issues of their own. Yujiro didn't go into the line of work that his father is famous for, and Aizo has a sort of messed-up family.

To be honest, my interest was flagging somewhat as the tension between Hiyori and Aizo and Yujiro slowly but surely melted away. Hiyori seemed to be losing interest in track and field (in part due to an injury she has sustained) and gaining it in regards to Idols, which is convenient but sort of feels like a cop-out. Don't just become another Idol worshipper, Hiyori! That could easily strip you of one of your most interesting and fun traits, namely your independent mindset. We learn that a male friend of Hiyori's is coming to town to visit her, an event which might generate tension with Yujiro and Aizo. An entire episode (number six) is basically spent getting ready for the visit, but this person, Nagisa (I think) does not arrive until the very end. Nevertheless, as the image and music faded from the screen, I found myself fervently wishing that this would be just the station break, not the episode end (which it was). Nagisa apparently won't be a recurring character as in episode seven Hiyori tactfully tells him that she's basically too busy right now to think about romance. I thought that was handled well. Hiyori helps Yujiro and Aizo learn a little team spirit during field day in episode eight.

In episode nine a 'scandal' occurs, but I put the term in quotation marks because as scandals go, this is a pretty weak one. Somebody has noticed that Hiyori speaks with Yujiro and Aizo more often than is permitted by the unwritten rules, and has taken some photos of them doing so. But they aren't doing much more than talking, and I don't see why it would be so terrible if she just admitted that she works at the same place as they do. Episode ten likewise made little sense as the supposed scandal dragged on. We finally learn who took the photos, and the conflict between this person and Hiyori is resolved, but I didn't get the sense that either had learned a major lesson that would make them better off in the future. In the end I was disappointed that Hiyori had wound up to be more or less just another fervent fan of Lip x Lip rather than someone with some country smarts who would teach them a few things and make them better as a result. It seemed more like she was the one who was transformed than they were, and not entirely in a good way. Maybe it was unrealistic to think that there might actually be an anime which would honestly criticise the culture of Idol worship in Japan. But I was happy to learn what lies ahead for Hiyori in the final episode.

Last updated Tuesday, July 05 2022. Created Sunday, April 10 2022.

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