Toshio FurukawaNaoko MatsuiHiroshi NakaWataru Takagi
Shocking Pink Girl Momoko
Also known as: MoMoKo
Medium: OVA, series
Year: 1990
Director: Masaru Tonogouchi
Actor: Aya Mizoguchi, Ayako Nagao, Hiroshi Naka, Kazuhiro Nakada, Masaharu Sato, Masashi Sugawara, Midori Nakazawa, Minori Matsushima, Minoru Inaba, Naoki Bando, Naoko Matsui, Rihoko Nagao, Takumi Yamazaki, Tetsuo Mizutori, Toshihiko Nakajima, Toshio Furukawa, Wataru Takagi
Keywords: anime, hentai, boobs, favourite
Country: Japan
Language: Japanese
Format: Two 40-minute episodes
Website category: Anime 1990s
Review date: 24 April 2024
It's fantastic. It's a witty, clever comedy with one of hentai's most richly characterised protagonists. It barely counts as hentai, mind you, being softcore-only and driven by its relationships, not sex.
"I have the same initials as Marilyn Monroe, M.M," says a bunny girl in the street. She's talking to us. "I'm Morita Momoko, age 22. I'm an actress in training. I've done countless auditions, but I haven't had a break yet. So that's me. I'm Momoko. I'm working at my part-time job right now. Jeez, look at all these people around here. At least one of them might bother to look at me. Cities really are unfriendly places. What's that? A salaryman who might be a good catch! I wonder why he's been waiting there for over an hour?"
That salaryman's name is Morita Kentarou and he's been kept waiting by his fiancee, Reiko. She'd promised to take him to a party. On eventually arriving an hour late, though, she says his outfit's all wrong and that there's no time for him to change clothes, so she goes off to the party solo and leaving him standing in the snow.
Momoko decides that Reiko's a bitch. Kentarou can do better! After a small incident to break the ice, she makes a suggestion. "I'll live with you and provide everything in your life that doesn't relate to your job. That way, my rent, employment and sexual needs will all be taken care of."
"You've just described marriage," says Kentarou.
"It needn't be that formal," says Momoko breezily, "if we both agree to it."
She's unstoppable. She invites herself into Kentarou's house and he can't get rid of her. (At one point, she'll offer to leave if he wants, but I'm pretty sure that was a tactic. Crying is another of her weapons.) She lies as easily as she breathes, often on outrageous subjects. ("I think I'm gonna try an adult video audition." Then, later: "I was lying, hoping Kentarou would stop me.") She has no taboos about nudity or sex and refuses to let Kentarou sleep on the floor when she's waiting in his bed, counting "boring sheep" aloud at him until he gives up and yells at her. That said, though, she's absolutely right about Reiko and she's serious about being a good girlfriend to Kentarou... whether he likes it or not. She's hard work and you'd be scared to leave her alone for a second because she'd probably cause trouble, but she knows what she wants and she works hard to achieve her goals. She's a brilliant liar. She could probably do anything.
Also (if we believe her), she had a disturbing father, about whom she's cheerful and unconcerned. "I bathed with my father until I started high school. He'd always scrub my chest and arse. That's why I'm so well developed."
Everything in the story's good, though. It's not just Momoko. Kentarou's likeable and his unwanted love triangle made me laugh. Kentarou's flatmate is amusing, Reiko is appalling but memorable and I even loved Momoko's pet iguana. The plotting is clever and ultimately heartwarming. Awkwardly, there's also an odd sort-of-rape scene in which the sleeping victim humiliates the incompetent rapist, who gives up and sits there feeling depressed. I'm not sure what I think about that scene, but everything else in this show I loved. It's one of the brightest, cleverest comedies I've seen in a while.
The ending's odd, though. They avoid the join-the-dots of a happy ending, instead giving us Momoko dialogue that's potentially disquieting for Kentarou's long-term prospects. But I'm sure they'll be fine. Momoko definitely will be.