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I have finally had a chance to check out the first episode of a liveaction take on one of my all-time favorite mangas, Ouran High School Host Club and I am in love in love in love in love in love.



Somehow they managed to transfer the cracky, cheeky, post-modern metaish, with a hidden heart vibe of the manga (and the awesome anime. It was the only shoujo anime Mr. Mousie ever liked).

The story, such as it is, is about Haruhi, a brilliant scholarship student in a ritzy school. Haruhi is a girl but has little interest in gender norms - she wears a male uniform as more comfortable and has her hair chopped short (I am not getting into long meta again but I really like this drama's take on gender). Through a hilarious set of circumstances, Haruhi ends up working as a host with the Ouran High School Host Club in order to pay a debt. The hosts are the only ones who know she's a girl and Haruhi is very popular with the ladies as a femmy type of boy. Haruhi is pragmatic and no-nonsense and is both puzzled and amused (and occasionally exasperated and always unimpressed) by her fellow hosts, especially by the leader, Tamaki, is a diva and a drama queen and totally lacking in street smarts and is the sweetest, kindest, loveliest person. Needless to say, Haruhi/Tamaki is my (and the manga's) OTP.

If you are looking for realistic exploration of class differences or low-key acting, stay away! It you want a funny, endearing, irrestible bit of fun, come right in!



Here is our heroine, who looks like Harry Potter, imo.




The hosts:




Haruhi and Tamaki in a nutshell. He's being super-dramatic and showing off and she's wondering "who is this lunatic?"






Bwahahahahahahahahahahahhahahahahahahahaha.








Petals!



Mocking (and profitting) from fangirls' love of slash, especially incest slash :P



I have never seen the actor who plays Tamaki before, but he totally takes it and runs with it. He makes me LOL like no other. I think half of my caps are of his facial expression. He's totally Tamaki brought to life.




She puts him down without meaning to, just with her common sense. Bwahahahaaaaaa.





They are all 'well done.' And she's all 'what did I do, I didn't do it on purpose.' Bwahahahaha.



"Commoners' Coffee!!!!!"



Yeah, that pretty much sums up their relationship in a nutshell:



Plying his 'skills':



Seriously, how could you not adore them? I started the manga years ago, when it wasn't clear at all they were the endgame (or that there would be an OTP at all, it's not a romance-heavy manga) and am so glad it worked out! Even though emotionally they were denser than a forest. Haruhi needs someone fun and impulsive and wide-open in her life, to unfreeze her after her mother died. And Tamaki needs someone steady, common-sense and who won't play games because he has enough of that from his psycho family. Plus, at the end, they move to Boston! So she could continue studying with her brilliant brain. Which makes me AWWWWWWW!




Haruhi gets a makeover so as to become a host:



The hosts approve:



Someone has got a crush!!!! Bwahahahahahahahahahahhahaaaaa!





Haruhi is v.v.v.v.v. popular. Hey, she looks manlier than a lot of the Johnnies :)




Like I said:



She's getting bullied - someone emptied her bookbag into the water and everything is soaked and she can't find her wallet. My opinion is: if you pick on Haruhi, you should die.






Both LOL and AWWW (which is pretty much what Ouran makes me feel all the time, simultaneously). Haruhi is wading and looking for her wallet and Tamaki sees and is all 'what are you doing?' and she's all 'yeah, hahahahaha the silly commoner is looking for her 10,000 yen which is nothing to you guys, go away and laugh somewhere else' but Tamaki just wades in to help her look (of course, being himself, he must dramatically remove his shirt first). "Handsome men can't be hurt by water." Bwahahahahahahahaa. It's funny, because this was the exact moment I fell for his character in every version of this. :) (Though for the love of God, Tamaki's actor and every other jdrama guy, please keep your shirt on. Or eat 10 sandwiches first).











And then all the hosts join in.







The girl who bullied Haruhi throws water at her but Tamaki jumps to cover her. Heeee.





"People who pick on Haruhi are unwelcome."




At the end of the ep, he's all excited because he found her wallet:





And then he sees!




"Haruhi, you are a girl?!?!"



The rest of the hosts "oh my God, you are dense, you finally figured it out?"



She's like "yeah, but I don't care one way or another, wearing a guy's uniform is fine etc."




LOLing forever!!!!




So yes, a total adoration. I have no idea how much of it is because I am so familiar with the story (i.e. I can't tell if there are any narrative gaps because I know the story backwards, and I come into it already loving the gang) but I do think it's really good. I will probably not even bother waiting for subs any more because I can follow raws (Darksmurf does fast and decent subs btw).

In conclusion, have a shippy anime MV, mainly because I adore the song:


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