Fans of manga anime romantic comedy enjoy the popular Wotakoi series from Fuji TV. Produced in Japanese with English language subtitles, the first season developed over the course of 11 episodes. The production centers around the manga Wotakoi (available in English through Kodansha Comics).
Fujita first released the television series in Japan based on the manga comic books on April 17, 2014. Beginning on April 12, 2018, the animated show began streaming on Prime TV as Wotakoi: Love is Hard For Otaku (2018). The series has also appeared under a variety of foreign language titles, including the English title “It’s Difficult to Love an Otaku.”
About The Wotakoi Anime
Wotakoi focuses upon the romantic relationship between two “otaku.” This term in Japanese reportedly refers to an individual who obsesses over a hobby to the point of sacrificing other social interests. An otaku carries connotations of nerdy behavior in the most unflattering sense of the word.
The Wotakoi series in Japan specifically targets an audience demographic of young women and older teenaged girls. It explores the paradox faced by otaku who share a consuming, passionate interest in their hobby, yet lack social skills important in helping maintain romantic relationships. The manga continues in production at this time, with some eight volumes released. Its popularity brings optimism to fans hoping the animated TV series will continue beyond the first 11 episodes.
Plot And Leading Characters
The central plot line of Wotakoi revolves around two characters who reunite unexpectedly. Petite, pretty Narumi Momose lives a secret life as an otaku obsessed with manga. During the first episode, her boyfriend breaks up with her as a result of her hobby. She then quits her job, and begins working for a new company. There she discovers her middle school boyfriend as a new co-worker. Handsome but nonchalant and frequently tactless, Hirotaka Nifuji also maintains an otaku interest: he loves to play video games. Unlike Narumi, he makes no attempt to conceal his obsession with gaming.
Hirotaka invites Narumi out for a drink after work. The two converse and catch up with one another’s lives. Hirotaka suggests they begin dating again, since they appear so well suited for one another. The first season concentrates on the ups and downs of their nerdy romantic relationship. Other significant characters include two older co-workers and friends of the young couple, Hanako Koyanagi (a secret cosplayer and actress) and her boyfriend, Tarou Kabakura (a fan of manga). Hirotaka’s younger brother, Naoya, and his friend, Ko, also appear in some episodes.
Behind The Scenes
Wotakoi benefits from a talented cast of voice actors and actresses. Masanori Miyake and Tooke Takase produce the animated series, together with Naokado Fujiyama and Kenta Suzuki. Arisa Date voices Narumi and Kent Ito voices Hirotaka. Other cast members providing voices include:
- Miyuki Sawashiro (Hanako);
- Tomokazu Sugita (Tarou);
- Yuki Kaji (Naoya);
- Aoi Yuki (Ko);
Minami Takahashi makes guest appearances playing Naoya as a child, and Mutsumi Tamura plays Hirotaka as a child.
An Upcoming Season Two?
Following the release of Season One in North America via a streaming platform during the spring of 2018, considerable speculation occurred in the media that fans might enjoy a second season of Wotakoi: Love is Hard For Otaku. A considerable span of time ensued between the release of the series on Japanese television and the appearance of the series on Amazon Prime. Will a network or a streaming service commission a second series in the near future?
At the present time, the production of a second season appears speculative. Yet some observers believe the animated series might well continue during another series of television anime selections. They note the ongoing availability of Wotakoi in manga form. The producers might easily find content for a second season of the show, as a result. Will the series continue in the form of a second season? Some media sources suggest further television episodes could appear during 2020 or 2021. Stay tuned!