- Alt. Name
- Hajimete no Gal
- Release Date
- Summer 2017
- No. of Episodes
My First Girlfriend Is A Gal is a 2017 Ecchi Romantic Comedy anime series from a relatively new Japanese animation studio, NAZ. If viewers are unaware of the studio, that’s probably because they have not created many recognizable series since their creation in 2013. While there is no way in knowing what series will gain immediate attention, ecchi anime series tend to achieve a particular fanbase right away. Though the fanbase is big does not mean that the series is any good, and more than likely, they’re just watching the show for the fan service. However, some series have used the ecchi genre to gain traction and created a wonderful experience within the world it created. However, can a studio make an entertaining yet enjoyable anime for both genders, or will they go for the low-hanging fruit?
A new school term begins, as does the season of new encounters. As he surveys his class of couples, Junichi Hashiba’s mind is filled with distress as he asks himself, “Why am I still a virgin?!” Having heard from his friends that the easiest way to fulfill his long-standing desire to graduate from the fellowship of virgins is to kowtow to a gal, Junichi does precisely that and asks his classmate Yukana out. And unbelievably, she agrees to date him. What will become of Junichi from now on? Will his life of being a virgin be over, or will he overthink everything and end up back in his group of virgin friends?
When it comes to worldbuilding and writing, My First Girlfriend is a Gal did a lot better than what one may expect. While this series will not be on a majority of people’s lists to watch, the fundamental positive is that it knows what it is and owns that. The series doesn’t try to be something it’s not like some other series of its genre, which makes this story better. The pacing is accurate to any romantic comedy, but what made the situations stand out more was that the events within this series are very realistic. Having the ability to create a romantic comedy anime series with believable situations is key to anyone watching. If the viewers can’t relate or fathom any similarities to the characters, they risk the story being cut short by its audience.
However, when it comes to the negatives within this series’ writing and the cold hard truth, there is a lot of them. For starters, it tends to be a big red flag when any anime series is less than the standard twelve or possibly thirteen-episode mark. Either the story hit the wall, and the writers didn’t know how to continue, or they were just done with their best work and called it a day. Another big red flag was that there are two types of ecchi fans, one with boundaries and one that doesn’t. This series took the latter of the two, and there were countless scenes with a lolicon taken to an extreme. While this may be fine for some viewers, the majority may feel uncomfortable viewing certain scenes with girls that look ten being overly sexualized.
This story may be very dull for some viewers, partly due to the generic romantic comedy setup. This series doesn’t stray away from any of the bare bone gimmicks that other series have, but what makes them different is that they don’t do anything with them. The story progresses and ends with a big “that’s the ending?” moment. Having a series that lacks creativity in such a large area of the story is troublesome for viewers hoping to get a glimpse of something worthy of their time.
Unlike the story, the artwork within My Girlfriend is a Gal is exceptionally well crafted. The beautiful character designs and color pallets were outstanding and wasted on a story of this caliber. While some of the characters’ designs are generic and not rememberable, the main female characters and crew are fashionable and easily recognizable. While these characters are outstanding, this is even more shocking because they were designed by the same person who had done the erotic comedy anime series My Wife is the Student Council President. Please don’t underestimate the power of an artist when given more opportunities to showcase their work.
When one views this series in either the original subbed or English dubbed version, the viewers will be welcome to a large sum of awkwardness. Though the dubbed has a little more comedy, both are equally funny due to the lack of comedic timing. Upon first viewing, the viewers will quickly identify the studio’s areas cut corners, mainly with the vast amount of mouth coverings and whatnot. The opening animation was well crafted, and the song choice was catchy and fit with the overall feeling of the series they were aiming towards. The ending theme song was a tad slower, but still a fast-paced song, nonetheless. When it comes to the ending animation, it was a solid effort, though it missed the mark of being good but still watchable.
Throughout the series, the viewers will be introduced to many characters, but the most predominant ones will be discussed in this review. Junichi Hashiba is a second-year high school boy who wishes to have a girlfriend. He regularly has sexual fantasies of losing his virginity and is depicted as having internal debates in his head over what to do in situations. His friends also pressure him to hook them up with girls, which is funny since he lacks confidence and charm with girls. As he learns that Yukana does indeed like him, he tries to remain loyal to her, turning down the other girls that make advances on him.
Yukana Yama is a fashionable high school “gal” with strawberry blond hair, green eyes, a busty chest, loose socks, and a carefree attitude. She was very guarded about lewd stuff, calling it gross and disgusting, but agreed to be Junichi’s girlfriend. She finds Jun transparent with his emotions and reactions and often calls Jun out for being a lewd virgin interested in her body, but teases him and flirts with him. Though she has it all together on the surface, underneath, she is in the same boat as Junichi. She is very caring and often seeks her friend’s advice on how to relate to Jun better; being a little naïve sometimes on applying the advice is usually how she handles things. She gets jealous when other girls interact with Junichi but doesn’t get too upset with him cause she trusts him and vice versa.
Ranko Honjo is Yukana’s childhood friend; she is a tall tan-skinned gal with short light blonde hair, light purple eyes, and a big chest. She is very aggressive and manipulative, making moves on Junichi, which makes Yukana jealous. Nene Fujinoki, on the other hand, is a petite but big-breasted first-year student girl who styles her hair up in buns. She and Jun are childhood friends, but she is obsessive over Jun and initially tries to dress and act like a little sister because he has expressed interest in that genre of video games. She briefly tries the gal lifestyle to try to win Jun over but to no avail.
While there are a lot of other characters in the series, these were the most dominant ones of the bunch. Though there was one that was strange from any viewpoint, pretty much can be described as a future child molester. His interactions with his peers are not funny; the way the characters don’t want any association with him in the future is hilarious. When it comes to the series characters, if they had gotten rid of the child molester, it’d be a lot better than it, unfortunately, was.
If one is looking for a guilty pleasure series, then My First Girlfriend is a Gal would make a good contestant. Though the story is very generic at times, it has a decent amount of simplicity. Will this series be suitable for everyone? No, but I doubt this is terrible for everyone. However, the ones that see this more than poor gimmicks and big bouncing breasts have a lot of explaining to do. This anime is highly unrecommended and is one that would make a fantastic drinking game. Still, even for an ecchi series, it’s very uninspiring, and there are a plethora of better options for one viewing pleasure. Watch My First Girlfriend is a Gal only if one has nothing else to watch and you feel like killing your brain a little bit.
Cody Senpai is the creator of BakaNow, an anime review website that specializes in spoiler-free reviews for everyone. He is an avid anime watcher who has traveled to Japan numerous times to not only experience the culture and history but also to build friendships with people through a common interest. He is an avid animation fanatic from birth and even went on to major in communication to help share the importance of the stories we love to watch and listen to. Cody lives in Denver, Colorado and loves to do anything adventurous.