Maoyu (DVD) Review
It's not a giant mecha story. It's not a magical girl story. It's not a harem anime, an urban fantasy anime, or a cyberpunk anime. Instead, it's a narrative primarily concerned with breast jiggles, internal politics and ecology. Lots, and lots, and lots of ecology.
The premise owes a bit to the Italian commedia dell’arte form of drama using particular stock character types to tell a story. Instead of named protagonists we have people like Hero and Female Knight, and instead of a grandiosely-named villain we have the Demon King; the latter is a double-misnomer being that she’s not a demon and not a man.
Following from that is a very, very in-depth guide of how to grow crops and have them fertilised by pigs. No, seriously; where Maoyu’s utter uniqueness enters play is through the excruciatingly detailed outlines of ecology and harvesting. In Episode 3 there’s a section detailing a quartered barley harvesting square that I swear took up a good half of the episode all on its own, and I’m not even exaggerating. If ever you wanted an idea of how to manage a farm and food during wartime, Maoyu might be the anime you didn’t even know you were waiting for.
But on the whole, I was not a fan of Maoyu. It’s apparently gangbusters popular in Japan, so take my word for whatever it’s worth, but I guess I don’t really fit in the niche this anime’s trying to target. If realistic wartime ecology and growing potatoes appeals to you in an anime juxtaposed with battles and heroic archetypes, then Maoyu may scratch your itch.