Home > Episode Reviews, School President is a Maid > School President is a Maid Episode 10 – Fan Appeal

School President is a Maid Episode 10 – Fan Appeal

Arrogant jerks, particularly of the male variety, tend to swarm like flies in shoujo romance series—often starting with the male romantic lead. So far School President is a Maid has given us not only Usui but also Miyabigaoka president Igarashi (along with seemingly every other Miyabigaoka student who’s had speaking lines), but that’s not enough for the show , it seems. We’ve already covered pretty-boy know-it-alls and the obscenely rich, so what’s the next easily stereotyped as arrogant group on the list? Popular musicians, of course.

Although I haven’t had cause to mention them directly, Misaki’s two closest friends are Sakura and Shizuko, who also have the misfortune of attending Seika, and who were directly responsible for gathering up the students who came to Miyabigaoka after her in episode 8. We’ve seen before that Sakura, much to Shizuko’s chagrin, is obsessed with indie rock bands, with one in particular topping her list.

Is it just me, or do all pretty boys wind up looking alike several episodes in?

That band is actually made up of high schoolers who are just beginning to grab attention outside of a small group of fans. That doesn’t mean they can just ignore their diehard supporters, however, which might be why lead singer Kuuga singles out Sakura both during and after a concert, to the point of giving her an invitation to a private meeting at a cafe, provided she brings some friends. From the band’s perspective, this is just trying to keep the fans happy and maybe charm some more followers, but Sakura—head over heels for Kuuga—sure doesn’t see it that way.

Things get complicated when Kuuga, who seems the most undisciplined and obnoxious of the lot, decides that the dragged-along Misaki is much more his type and starts doing some Usui-style flirting with her in the hallway. After being interrupted by Usui himself, he goes back to the table and starts actively ignoring Sakura, making it clear to her where his interests really lie. He follows this up by “asking” her to convince Misaki to come to their next concert, which she reluctantly attempts.

Note the sole canine showing. Igarashi also displayed that tooth on occasion, making me wonder it that's the show's way of signaling villains

It’s only when Kuuga starts publicly propositioning Misaki in from of Sakura, implying several unpleasant things about Misaki’s character in the process, that Sakura finally snaps, telling him off for treating her friend like that. Having been defended by Sakura, Misaki jumps in to defend her in return, and the meal ends with Kuuga having lost one dedicated fan.

And … that’s it. There’s remarkably little maid stuff this episode, remarkably little Usui, and remarkably little anything that normally characterizes the show. Granted, it’s still much more in keeping with the overall theme than last week’s debacle, but it’s not exactly high stakes either. The show has slowly been escalating the dramatic tension of each episode (or at least trying to) with successively more serious challenges for Misaki to face—perhaps with a little help from her wonderboy stalker.

The comedy for the show is still working-especially when Usui identifies himself as Misaki's "stalker" and Misaki tries and fails to rebut the charge

This episode simply doesn’t have that sort of pressure to keep it going. There’s no threat of violence, danger to the reputation of the school or of Misaki, new crippling financial burden, any of that. All this episode has is the threat of a broken heart. And no matter how sympathetically cute Sakura is as she expresses her doomed love, or as she is slowly overcome by the devastating realization that the object of her affections couldn’t care less about her, and is making a display of going after her friend, it just doesn’t quite measure up.

It is a good development episode for Sakura, for whatever that’s worth. Her idealism and naivete come out clearly, but also her love for her friends. As horridly as Kuuga treats her, she still acts as a doormat, trying to help him spend time with Misaki as a way of showing her own feelings for him. Only when he starts being rude to Misaki does she stand up to him. Even her enthusiasm in dragging her friends along to band events is caused by her desire to share the joy she experiences with them—even if it’s obvious to everyone else that they just aren’t getting it.

Sakura's enthusiasm is childlike in its earnestness, which is why she doesn't notice that Shizuko couldn't care less

As Usui barely has enough screen time to even harass Misaki properly, there’s not much development of their relationship, but there is a crucial hint when Misaki realizes that she comforts Sakura in the same way that Usui comforts (or tries to comfort) her. There might be a realization dawning that his head pats aren’t just another form of harassment, but I’m worried that any such realization that Usui cares for her will just be sabotaged again in an effort to keep the plot stable.

I suppose that’s the potential threat with any romantic comedy: the concern about letting the leads officially pair up too soon, and the obnoxious stall tactics and reversals that are employed to keep that from happening. I appreciate that the writers need to keep too much from happening. But we’ve now had two episodes in a row where any real plot progression has been on standby. And that’s not what I would have hoped for for this show.

His treatment of Misaki is still remarkably paternalistic, but at least he encourages her for all the right things

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