And that price for all 4 This Boy anime is: Free! So great deal or potentially no deal at all.

  • Titles: This Boy Can Fight Aliens; This Boy Caught a Merman; This Boy Suffers from Crystallization; This Boy is a Professional Wizard
  • Genre: Shonen-ai; drama, romance, supernatural
  • This Boy Can Fight Aliens: 1 OVA
  • This Boy Caught a Merman: 1 OVA
  • This Boy Suffers from Crystallization: 1 OVA
  • This Boy is a Professional Wizard: 4 episodes
  • Studio: CoMix Wave

Well, this is going to be something new. You see, I heard of This Boy Caught a Merman because it was recommended to me based on my undying and somewhat unreasonable love for Orenchi no Furo Jijō. From there I discovered that they were actually a series of loosely connected OVAs and one short. Since all the This Boy titles put together are roughly two hours long, I figured there wasn’t enough material for me to review them individually, so I’m going to attempt to review them all in the same post. Wish us both luck.

Although I said each of the This Boy titles are related, it’s only on a thematic and production level. They are 4 completely different stories with different characters. As such, I’m going to have to summarize them all individually. I’m not sure which order they came out in but I don’t think there’s any specific order to watch them in.

This Boy Can Fight Aliens

Kakashi suddenly finds himself as the only one capable to fight mysterious aliens invading the earth. He has lost his memories and now spends each day with his friends Arikawa and Shiro, fighting off the invaders. But deep down, Kakashi knows something is wrong and he is very scared to find out what.

This Boy Caught a Merman

After losing his beloved grandfather (and his only family) Shima wades into the ocean not really knowing what to do next. And that’s how he meets Isaki the merman. Not wanting to leave the boy alone in this fragile state, Isake decides to follow him home. But can a merman really live on land?

This Boy Suffers from Crystallization

A strange disease is turning people into beautiful gems whenever they feel stressed or sad. This is particularly difficult for a boy named Ayumu. As a high school boy, he is very prone to stress. Especially as he has difficulty relating to his classmates and feels ostracized because of his illness. Thankfully, Onihara-sensei loves minerals and is there to help the boy during this tough time. Will that be enough to stop him from turning completely to stone?

This Boy is a Professional Wizard

Chiharu is a professional wizard in charge of the government’s magic department counter-measure division. He is very good at his job. In fact, magic is the only thing Chiharu believes he is good at all. Until he meets a man at a bar who tells him he’s fallen in love with him at first sight. Balancing magic and romance may prove to be more of a challenge than Chiharu thought.

How’s that? If you read all those synopses and thought to yourself, those sound like shonen-ai doujins, well that’s cause it’s what they are. Short little stories about boys falling in love. Except for the alien one, there’s no real couple in that one.

Because of how short they are you won,t get that much development, Basically, you meet the boys, each of them gets a tragic backstory. They meet the other boy (or their friends), feelings arise, complications ensue, contrived drama drives a wedge between them, last-minute resolution and happy ending! That’s it.

So no grand sweeping tales of romance or epic emotional journeys. And if like me, you watch all four in a row, they do get a bit repetitive. But you know. I like shounen-ai doujin. They might be superficial and predictable but they are also sweet and comforting. The worst I can say about these stories really is that they’re shallow.

I like plenty pretty but shallow people

However, the This Boy series really shine in their production. You have been seeing images throughout the post so you already have an idea.

All the This Boy titles were directed, created, written and designed by Soubi Yamamoto. I believe she was a BL doujin author at some point so that explains the familiar feeling. And all of these titles are works of art.

It’s difficult to really explain the visuals and the stills do not do them justice. They look a bit like an animated collage although each title actually features a variety of art styles and techniques. The sound design is often matched to somewhat surreal images and there’s a cadence to the frame rate. The brightness of the images is also often played with to go along with the mood.

It’s just a pleasure to watch.

Now I realize that the BL aspect of it may be a bit intimidating to some of my readers. So I would suggest watching the first episode of This Boy is a Professional Wizard. The other 3 are 25 minute OVAs but Wizard is actually 4 short episodes so watching just one is going to be like 6 minutes. And you will get to see something that I think is really worthwhile on a purely technical level, regardless of the narrative.

On the other hand, if you are into slightly maudlin shonen-ai stories, then I see no reason for you to not seek the This Boy series out. It’s low commitment, beautiful and full of BL tropes.

The one thing I would suggest though is spacing them out. Whenever you’re in the mood for one, just watch it and then watch something else. Since the stories aren’t connected, there’s no real advantage to watching them all in a row anyways.

And yea, I did prepare 4 different drinking games. They are pretty short but you can’t get too much repetition out of 25 minute OVAs.

no favourite character in this one – to though over 4 different titles

Suggested drink: Atta Boy

This Boy Can Fight Aliens

  • Every time  there a new alien challenge – take a sip
  • Every time Shiro is grumpy – take a sip
  • Every time we see the cell phone – have a sinking feeling
  • Every time we see the spaceships – take a sip

This Boy Caught a Merman

  • Every time we see Shinra’s grandfather – pour some out
  • Every time Shinra cries – take a sip
  • Every time Isaki causes trouble – giggle
  • Every time the boys eat together – get a snack
  • Every time Shinra’s red-headed friend calls him  – take a sip

This Boy Suffers from Crystallization

  • Every time  Tamaki has a crystal attack – take a sip
  • Every time Tamaki fails to interact with his classmates – relate
  • Every time they turn into chibis  – take a sip

This Boy is a Professional Wizard

  • Every time Chiharu casts a spell   – take a sip
  • Every time anyone is having a drink – join them
  • Every time we see the memento more sign – take a sip
  • Every time  anyone says “magician” or “wizard” – take a sip
  • Every time there’s a date montage – awwww
  • Every time the boys stare a meal – get another snack

4 thoughts

  1. Yay!! So happy whenever I see these OVAs recommended by anyone – I found them all to be so lovely, although Professional Wizard, closely followed by Merman, are my top faves.

    1. They were all sweet and the production is so interesting. Too bad we don’t hear about them more often

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