Better later than never. The rom-com harem series A Couple of Cuckoos finally premiered as one of the last spring titles to start its broadcast. As the headline of this review suggests, it was one crazy and messy pilot episode. Compared to a stacked roster of rom-com airing this season, this one looks pretty generic. The animation and character design may not be where the series stands out, however, its main selling point is its plot. So what makes its plot interesting you may ask? Hint: It’s definitely not incest.
The Unique and Messy Plot of A Couple of Cuckoos
The plot of the series follows Nagi Umino and Erika Amano who got switched at birth. Sixteen years later after being raised by their non-biological parents, both families finally meet up for dinner. Thereafter, the parents agreed to arrange a marriage for them so in that way they both will be their children. A nice but selfish idea from parents. Anyways, right before their dinner, Nagi and Erika coincidentally stumbled upon each other (literally). With Erika knowing about the marriage, she tries to deceive her parents by pretending she’s dating Nagi. But little did she know, that her fake boyfriend is actually her fiance.
The story doesn’t end there though as it gets even crazier. Both are put in a predicament due to their fake relationship act and they also don’t have a slight interest in the marriage idea. Moreover, Nagi is in love with somebody else, his classmate Hiro Segawa who’s at the top of the class. His step-sister Sachi Umino also joins the harem fray as she seems to fancy him after realizing that they aren’t really related. In addition to this somewhat messy plot, the way it was set up at first was also quite far-fetched.
A Vague Intro
While the plot sounds compelling, the introduction of it was shown as rather vague and unconvincing. I had a few questions in mind about this whole mix-up that started this shenanigan. Didn’t the parents know the genders of their babies? If so, how did both families just go home with their babies having different genders? Didn’t they get suspicious when the children started growing? This part of the story is what stood out as not very well thought out, but it does not seem like it matters much in the grand scheme of things. The goal was to set up the main characters and this plotline managed to do that. How convincing it was is another story.
Episode One Impressions
In spite of the vague backstory, A Couple of Cuckoos‘ episode 1 was surely entertaining. It subtly showed the two personalities of the protagonists on their so-called date. They have this sweet chemistry together and I hope it will be similar for other members of the harem. After all, what makes up a good harem is the interaction of the beautiful waifus with the chad main character, the decent reasoning behind their connections, and a stacked cast roster.
Speaking of the cast, the line-up is also one of a kind and definitely my favorite next to To Become A Real Heroine this season. Simps of Hiro better be wary though because her voice actress (Nao Toyama) is notorious for voicing rejected characters. Anyhow, with the pilot episode alone, it’s already a good contender for one of the top harem titles of the season. However, with its distinctive plot serving as its major appealing aspect, this can be very risky as it may plummet when the story gets stale. Inevitably though, with a plot like this, it can be remembered in one of two ways: a great example for its genre or a dumpster fire like Domestic Girlfriend and Eromanga-sensei. In all honesty, I’m fine with either.
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Screenshots via Crunchyroll
© Miki Yoshikawa / Kodansha / A Couple of Cuckoos Production Committee