I’m a little surprised that Scamp, Hinano and Janette all found Kaichou wa Maid-sama to be not that good. I haven’t watched enough shoujos to know what’s standard shoujo trope, but I actually liked it quite a bit. Still iffy on whether I’d continue watching it, but I thought it was much better than the last shoujo I tried to watch: Kimi ni Todoke. In my book, Kimi ni Todoke = all shoujos. So I’m going to tell you why I thought the first ep of Kaichou was about 500 times better than the beginning of Todoke.
Reason #1, Misaki is moe moe beautiful. I know it’s shallow, but a pretty face will capture my attention for a longer bit of time. Compare that to Sawako who looked like the girl from The Ring. No contest. Also, all the character art in general is a lot more attractive in Kaichou vs. Todoke. Even the non-Misaki girls were cute, compared to Todoke where I think they purposely made every non-Sawako girl less attractive than even she was.
Reason #2, Misaki is strong, dependable and has a spine, compared to Sawako who could barely get a sentence out without creepily popping out of a bathroom stall or something. Oh sure, Misaki was a little too feminazi in this episode for my tastes, but I’d rather watch a girl be a banchou, than a girl desperately trying to make friends for the first time in her life.
Reason #3, Usui is sort of a dick, unlike Kazehaya who was so boringly polite and perfect. Oh sure, Usui’s a little too perfect himself. Bishounen, great grades, great at sports, the most popular guy in school, but I liked seeing him taunt Misaki after finding out she was a maid. I would’ve done the same thing. And asking her to be his personal maid for a day, when she asks how she can return a favor? That’s a comeback line right out of a shounen.
The only thing that irked me about the episode is that I think the romance flags triggered too quickly. Maybe that’s a shoujo thing. I’d rather have watched Usui taunt Misaki for several more episodes, with the two being all tsuntsun to each other, until Misaki finally lets down her tsuntsun guard towards the end of the season. Instead both Usui and Misaki show a little too much deredere way too early.
All in all, it was a solidly amusing first episode. The shoujo elements may eventually turn me off from it, but I liked it enough to want to keep watching for now.