I have been known to enjoy a fan-service anime or two in varying circumstances – even series with premises that, at first glance can be skeezy, can be executed well – as with What The Hell Are You Doing Here, Teacher? I had hoped that Mother of the Goddess’ Dormitory would fit into that criteria – and it almost does. However, it has a few points that don’t quite make it work.
The premise almost flies. The main character is Koushi, a young guy whose house burns down and whose father – his only parent – bails on him, leaving him alone and homeless. He ends up being taken in by the students of a dorm at a Women’s University – the titular Goddess’ Dormitory. There’s just one problem – the students of the dorm in question are a bunch of barely-together dumpster fires who, while attractive, are less competent at adulting than he is, so it’s up to him to get things together and straighten things up. Various hijinx ensue, often involving the girls being indifferent to their state of undress around our protagonist.
Except our main character is a middle school student.
Now, this could still work – middle school in Japan runs for longer than it does in the US, our protagonist could be on the cusp of entering High School – which in Japan would put him at 16 – not great, but better.
Nope, he looks about 13.
Still potentially workable – if you have the protagonist himself not sexualized, with the fanservice focusing exclusively on the female characters. You could have some sexual slapstick with this, with the main characters unintentionally shoving our protagonist into their cleavage, or occasionally walking into someone blindly around a corner who wasn’t wearing a top because they don’t view our protagonist sexually and they don’t give a fuck.
Nope, by the end of the series, at least three characters are crushing on the protagonist, and we also have a joke related to the protagonist getting a massage session referencing a soapland.
Well, at least the only female characters who are depicted in a sexual way are the college students, and thus are all unquestionably of legal age.
Nope, our protagonist’s childhood friend and classmate at their school is introduced in a later episode and the show ends up perving on her a couple of times.
The show just gets so close to pulling it off. I could have given the age of the protagonist a pass with reservations, if he wasn’t sexualized as well – that his role was just to serve as a foil and straight man. Or, if the protagonist had to be sexualized and written as a romantic interest if the character was older.
To be clear, a lot of the humor here lands, it just lands on its head and neck enough times that I can’t feel comfortable giving this a recommendation.
Mother of the Goddess’ Dormitory is currently available for streaming on Hidive.
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