Kaichou wa Maid-Sama! (The Class President is a Maid!) is a romantic comedy and shoujo anime based on the manga written by Hiro Fujiwara with a total of 26 episodes, aired back in April 2010.
Kaichou wa Maid-Sama! focuses on the main female protagonist, Ayuzawa Misaki. Her journey begins with her being the first female student council president of Seika High, previously an all-boys school notorious for its wild students that recently become a co-ed school.
She worked her way up through perseverance, discipline and hard work. But what the students of Seika High don’t know is that their president is also a maid working at a maid café; hence the title. Misaki would do anything in her power to avoid letting people know about her secret…until she gets caught by her fellow schoolmate, Usui Takumi.
But what makes Kaichou wa Maid-Sama! a good romcom shoujo anime?
Typical storyline yet not so
Plot-wise, it is as predictable as expected from a romantic comedy anime. A couple slowly catching feelings for one another as they go through many ups and downs in their journey together. However, the anime challenges the status quo of this genre with the idea of the maid café. The idea of how the jobs we do reflect how people see us is one of the recurring themes that is shown in the anime.
The story is told through a series of events that one can find in a typical school life like sports day, school festivals, and even normal daily school life activities. There are also episodes that focus more on the maid café like the different events they hold and the challenges of working in one. It is also one of the few anime where you get a glimpse at what it’s really like to work in a maid café in Japan.
An interesting set of characters
As for the characters, the anime revolves around Misaki and her main love interest Usui. Misaki, in a nutshell, is a tsundere and a hardworking female that has to juggle between her work as a maid in the café to support her family and her responsibilities as a student council president and as a student – without letting both these worlds collide. Her tsundere-ness can be seen when Usui comes and goes with his teasing and her reluctance to be saved by Usui in certain situations. She is strong-willed, which tends to make her rely on no one but herself.
Usui, as quoted by Misaki, is a “Perverted Outer Space Alien” who is also the massive heartthrob of the school. He is possessive and always tries his best to save Misaki when she can’t do it herself. He usually tries to attract Misaki’s attention through his teasing thus giving him this stalker vibe, but he ultimately just wants Misaki to be more honest about her feelings and to rely on others.
There are also side characters – that despite not getting much character development unlike the main two – manage to click together and form this harmonious bunch of people. The interactions between them are brilliant and it is from there that we can enjoy their comedic value. The one thing you can enjoy the most from this anime besides its funny banters is the fact that our heroine isn’t some damsel in distress that can’t stand on her own two feet, so it is a rather nice thing to see compared to other anime of its genre.
The recurring main theme song
In terms of music, the main theme of the anime can be heard frequently throughout the anime especially when Misaki accomplishes something or has just solved one of the many conflicts that she faces. Other than the main theme, there aren’t any soundtracks that really stick to you but it suits the atmosphere of the situation well enough. It is cool but not outstanding enough for you to remember it at the tip of your fingers.
Great contrasts in animation style
Another reason to watch it is for the art and animation style. Although the backgrounds are slightly plain, it makes the main characters stand out among the crowd of ordinary people. The contrast in art styles helps us viewers know where to focus our attention. Their transition from normal art to chibi style really brings out the comedic element in the anime. Other visuals like arrows, question marks and exaggerated flowing tears add to the comedy. The art style gives life to the anime, making it much more appealing to watch.
This anime’s main target audience, as suggested by the genre, is the younger female audience because it gives them a chance to imagine themselves in a life where they are feared and respected by many, where hard work does pay off, and where they manage to catch the eye of one of the school’s hottest guys. However, the curious male audience can also give this anime a try as the lifestyles of the characters and comedy showed are relatable for both genders.
It is one of those anime where you watch in your leisure to have a good laugh and fantasize about having a near perfect happy ending. It also has themes and values which we can incorporate into our daily lives, making this anime worth watching for both reasons of enjoyment and empowerment. I highly recommend this anime for those who love romantic comedy animes like Ouran High School Host Club and Toradora!.
While you’re enjoying the anime, be inspired by Misaki’s personality and learn a thing or two from her journey to make your own life fulfilling in its own way without any regrets be it in your school or work life.
A bonus for fans who have watched the anime and continued on with the manga: there is a 40 page spin-off manga which completes the whole journey with the power couple, called Yukiochimura ni Oujosama. Also written by Hiro Fujiwara, we get to follow Usui and Misaki’s children on a short adventure and enjoy seeing the resemblance they have with their parents!