333rd G-View: A Centaur’s Life

Very important note before we begin. The following series is one that requires the viewer to have a very specific knowledge of what it is about: This show is primarily about world building. The world it is set is the most important character. There is a cast of characters but they all contribute to the world’s ongoing development. The interested can get more detail on what I mean as we take a look at A Centaur’s Life.

a-centaurs-life.jpg

Genres: Slice of Life, Comedy, Fantasy

Themes: Monster Girls, Magical Creatures, School Life, World Building, Race

Number of Episodes: 12

G-Rating: 8/10 (Personal), 7/10 (Overall)

Plot Summary: Follows the school life of a teenage centaur named Himeno, and her friends, who happen to be mermaids, angels, and other mystical creatures.

Hime embarrassed

A scene from a chapter in the manga I never expected to get adapted.

As mentioned in the introduction this show is primarily about world building as it is set in a Pseudo-Utopia like alternate Earth where “monster” people rule. What I mean is that while stuff happens it is ultimately all part of everyday life, as the show’s first English title states. There is no endgame despite there being hints of something big going on behind the scenes at the halfway point of the show. Because of this not every episode is fun or entertaining in the conventional sense. There are times the show delivers great fun and cuteness, especially when the little ones appear, but there are other times the main girls are doing mundane activities like their homework, talking about hair or health care. However, during the mundane parts (Each episode is split into two parts) it is recommended to pay close attention to what the girls’ discussions and especially what is going on in the background, be it a news report, the kind of TV show airing or what other people are doing.

Hime's ancestor

From time to time we get to see flashbacks of the world’s rough history.

The world development includes events and conversations revolving around its rough history, the economy, global politics, art and many other interesting topics for people who care to invest their time learning about this world. However, out of all the topics brought up the most prominent of them all is race and discrimination because most, if not all crimes committed throughout the world’s history comes down to differences in culture, religion and of course race. The rules and regulations across the globe to uphold the law and protect everyone from racism and discrimination are VERY STRICT! This leads to the show being all over the place in terms of tone. Sometimes it is very lighthearted and cute, other times it is more dramatic than the regular SoL or Girls Club show, then it gets delightfully bizarre and then out of nowhere it becomes dark and depressing…all of this in no particular order, leading to some people criticizing the unbalanced pacing and narrative. On the other hand…the randomness, provided viewers are okay with watching characters not always doing fun or interesting stuff, is also what makes this show unique.

Another thing I noticed is that, maybe subconsciously, is that some viewers did not like seeing sensitive topics being brought up all “willy-nilly”. Nothing in this show is romanticized and from what I have seen that seems to be a problem for some: The fact that issues people do not feel comfortable discussing, like racism, health care, inequality, are just part of this world and not some grand symbolic, deep, compelling obstacle the heroines must overcome. They are just…there. Keep this in mind.

From my perspective this all sounds like the show is chock full of social commentary from left to right…and it is but I do not see it as a bad thing in this show because, again, it is part of the Pseudo-Utopia setting. It is something that will hopefully be overcome or more realistically lessened but not some kind of Captain Planet style propaganda on how viewers should overcome it. It leaves the audience to ponder that for themselves based on the discussions on the show.

Tama-chan, The Chi Triplets, Shino and Hime

Some of the little ones of the show, aka many viewers’ favorite characters.

Having said all that, it does not mean the important characters are devoid of development of reason to get emotionally invested in them. On the contrary the important ones do have times they get screen time devoted to doing more than just daily activities. We get to learn how their family lives are like, some having more personal struggles than others and even how they live their lives based on their upbringing and even religion. The character with the most development is the one I like to call President Angel. Her life is something else let me tell you. Then, as mentioned in the above image we have the favorite characters of many, the children, aka the little ones such as Shino the pony, the Chisters (The Chi triplets whose names all start with Chi) and the baby angel Sue (Su-eh). Their main purpose, besides providing intellectual topics of conversation like the older girls, is to bless viewers’ monitors/TV screens with their presence. There are also some interesting side-characters and races whose culture and lives provide some interesting topics, again should the viewer be interested. Each and every race is detailed in how they spend the day, how they react to other races emotionally and sexually and even showing viewers how they put their clothes on, specifically centaurs. A LOT OF DETAIL went into the conception of this world that mixes real life with magical creatures and that is one of the reasons I personally enjoy this series.

The animation is solid. The environments are simple and the characters all look good The soundtrack is not memorable but the OP and ED are both pretty good.

Let us briefly go back to the topics brought up. Some of them could interest a lot of people, such as the interpersonal and intrapersonal value and definition of art. Then there are topics for a select few people…such as the (I am certain) episode 4, Part A, aka Chapter 0. At first I asked why they would adapt this chapter of all things but thanks to one of my fans I realized that almost every episode had a topic SOMEONE could relate to, even “that one“. This leads to again say that while it would have been better to consistently adapt more entertaining chapters I argue that all of the ones we got not only served a purpose but that there are even people who could relate with specific issues our protagonists go through in the show. For some of them not many but definitely not no one.

Hime choking Nozomi

Hime X Nozomi, the super ship.

Sidecouple

Keep an eye on the two girls next to Nozomi the demon here.

As far as yuri goes it is very interesting. Without spoiling too much one of the topics brought it in an episode is the perception of same-sex relationships. Let me put it this way. If there is one thing EVERY SINGLE PERSON who picked this show up can take away from it is how well it presented and handled its yuri. Oh and the girls pictured are not the only lesbians on the show.

 

Overall A Centaur’s Life can either be seen as a mixed bag or for a select audience. Manga readers will say better chapters could have been adapted to improve the overall experience for the majority but even so every episode from the fun, deep, adorable to the mundane served a purpose. While not all of them were entertaining I often found something to enjoy or got something valuable from watching. I suppose this one of those “not for everyone” shows. It certainly is not mainstream sweetheart material though for people interested in a show that goes into great detail on how its setting works then it is certainly worth a look. I ultimately see this show at least becoming a cult hit. Also expect the unexpected. It is very unconventional to say the least. Sometimes viewers will like what they see, other times not so much. The show is random in every sense of the word…but not the kind of random anyone can enjoy. Keep everything I said in this review in mind before picking up this obvious “Manga Lure” show.

About OG-Man

Yuri and Slice of Life are my anime passion.
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25 Responses to 333rd G-View: A Centaur’s Life

  1. Shinryu says:

    I really enjoyed the show for basically all of the same reasons mentioned above. I loved how it often showed the different sides of the various topics it covered and respected the audience enough to let them think about it on their own. Very good stuff and an easy recommendation as long as you bear in mind the caveats given in this review.

    My only issue was probably the last episode as I found it to easily be the worst of the season and was a pretty poor way to end the show off. I wasn’t expecting much closure but both segments here left something to be desired. The first half was a very pale imitation compared to the tease we had of that scene in the OP from the very start (and the slime tentacle fan service was beyond dumb). The second half was much better but was still sort of pointless and felt it dragged on way too long. I guess I liked the wink wink battle between who the real main character of the series was but that was about it.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Mauron says:

    Definitely a fan of the show, and I’ll have to pick up more than the single volume I have in the future.

    Chi-chans remain the best character and deserve a spinoff.

    Hopefully Hime and Nozomi can discuss their feelings in canon at some point.

    Liked by 2 people

    • OG-Man says:

      Oh yes. If you liked what you saw but want a more consistent order of what to expect and when then the manga is the way to go but what we got from the anime was still pretty good.

      Even more of the little ones would be nice. We saw how well it worked out for Kanna and Riko.

      Should the plan be for them to hook up then definitely.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. LiteraryScribeOtakuGamerGirlT says:

    More good stuff for sure. I found it to be unique and interesting as far as SoL shows like this go , but I do think the most stand out aspect was its world building and its approach to yuri. The latter is surely deserving of praise. I can only hope that Hime x Nozomi and the other two canon lesbians will continue to enjoy fruitful relationships. Same to Prez and her bae too. Also, I think the first half showed that Nozomi is indeed a girl and has her own kind of sex appeal just as well as Hime. Finally, I’ve settled on the fact that Prez is best girl (for me). The ending was tame, but honestly not surprising for the show, but a season 2 would be nice.

    Liked by 3 people

    • OG-Man says:

      I get what you’re trying to say about Nozomi. She may act boyish and attract women more dressed in dashing attire but she still looks great looking more feminine. Like Hime she too is sexy.

      President Angel is everyone’s favorite adult character. We can hope for one but I doubt we’ll get it considering the mainstream wasn’t too kind to it from what I gathered, which is a shame but not unexpected.

      Liked by 2 people

    • OG-Man says:

      Yup. Never hurts to hope.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I enjoyed this in the same way that I enjoyed Flying Witch. It was mostly soothing, with moments of serious or silly in the mix.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Wanderer says:

    While I do think there was more this adaptation could have done to truly grasp the spirit of the manga, I will say that, individually speaking, it did a good job adapting each chapter that they chose to bring over. Speaking from my purely person desires I wish they had included the Akira x Nadeshiko date chapter, since it would have helped explain the “I lost, but she has the same face as you so it’s all right” comment that I suspect most people missed in the final episode. Also because Akira is my favorite side-character, and I love shipping her with Nadeshiko.

    They barely touched some of the stranger elements of this series, but did a decent job showing the slice of life set in a world with dark under/overtones thing. As well as the fact that those dark and serious issues are just part of life, rather than a major plot to be overcome: much like real life. Our girls are simply living in the world that they’re living in, and dealing with the lives that they’ve got. No more, no less.

    PS: Tama-chan is still best girl. As proven by the Chii-chans.

    Liked by 2 people

    • OG-Man says:

      As far as adaptations go it did its job and did it well.

      As I said about fans of the manga who feel it could and should have consistently adapted more eventful chapters, what we got still worked.

      She did get the best development among the cast so it’s not surprising.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Reapy_s0ul says:

    I have to say that I definitely enjoyed this one quite a bit, the characters were all at fairly likable in terms of personality, not only that, but they all fit fairly well into the world as it is, there aren’t really any characters that feel out of place or anything.

    My personal favorite girl would have to be Suu, I just like her personality and I think she’s an adorable snek bun, do not bully or you will be abducted, that is all.

    Now for the ships, in short, I like them, they empower me to do my best and I want to nurture and protect them, especially HimeNozo, also, I like how they approached same-sex relationships by just making it “a thing”, it doesn’t have much stigma around it and nobody really… “cares”, for lack of a better term, I keep saying stuff like this, but that’s really how I think it should be with things like “identity”, it’s really not a useful concept in a modernized society that has equal human rights.

    S P E A K I N G O F P O L I T I C S dot pdf

    (inb4 reapy repeats himself again for the 5000th time)
    I REALLY think that persecution just isn’t the way to combat hate and whatnot, government thought policing is just the worst thing to ever exist tbh, I realize that authoritarian regimes don’t give a fuck about their citizens, but thought policing is just going too far, we’re already being monitored by our governments, what if they actually decide to act on the information they’re collecting?
    I shiver at the thought…
    Now, you (figuratively, that is, not actually you) might say “well, reapy, you fucking criminal, maybe you should just not think the wrong things?”, and if anyone thinks that, there’s definitely something wrong with their brain, it terrifies me to think that people can be convinced into joining authoritarian ideologies of their own free will despite the full-stop lacking any semblance of morality and human decency (yes, I realize these are subjective concepts, but can you really say with a clean conscience that you’d side with someone who supports having a person’s door broken down because they think the wrong thing?).

    Honestly, I think the society in Centaur no Nayami is probably economically capitalist (since not everyone is starving to death) with some authoritarian/commie societal tendencies (like thought policing), as I haven’t seen anything referring to the lack of private property, and not everyone has been thrown into a gulag to work until they die, it’s not as bad as I originally thought (although reeducation is really fucking scary tbh).

    Either way, it’s still fantasy, although it bares much resemblance to real life politics and history, there could be some differences (for example, highly advanced snek Illuminati who have probably interfered in everyone else’s business at one point or another).

    In conclusion, good characters, good world, good yuri, it made me think a bit which is always fun, would enjoy a second season.

    Liked by 2 people

    • OG-Man says:

      Yup. It brought up a lot of good topics but didn’t give solutions or answers. As seen through your comments you provided your own opinions, which means it did its job.

      Plenty of good stuff despite not every episode/part hitting the mark.

      Let’s also not forget about the yuri goodness and respectable treatment of lesbians who appeared.

      Like

  7. LuzeriP says:

    I enjoyed it very much. The random stories and somehow got dark, they were interesting. And the randomness stayed until the last episode. Part A they were like throwing bunch of fanservice to our face. I think it was a sarcastic kind of fanservice and I found it very funny. And part B was, I have no idea.

    The little ones remain my favorite for obvious reason. And I can’t decide between Hime and Tama-chan. They’re both lovely. I don’t mind second season or maybe 12 OVAs in the future.

    Liked by 2 people

    • OG-Man says:

      Yes. Something like that for the first Part. The second Part was more fun or as someone said “a wink to who the real main character is” I suppose.

      More from the little ones would be nice.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. cirno9fan says:

    Too loss of focus in what it wanted to do. The final episode was so…not final, that I was triple quadruple guessing myself that there was going to be an episode preview. Worse than a cliffhanger is an episode that literally just…stops. Solves nothing, starts nothing, just ends. And I agree that fits the show, but that doesn’t make it any less a waste of time.

    Show had a lot of interesting topics it explored, but fell flat in too many other areas to be considered a good watch. It wasn’t a terrible show, just an okay show with terrible episodes/segments

    Like

    • OG-Man says:

      In the end viewers have to understand what the show is doing AND be okay with it. If the viewer gets what it’s doing but is not okay with it then it cannot be truly enjoyed. I have run into enough people online to understand that fact. At least we got several likable and cure characters to follow around.

      As for what I said about the yuri, about my greatly respecting how they approached same-sex relationships and homosexuals, that remains true.

      Like

  9. ArcaJ says:

    I was ready to start ranting at the “Sexy Armor” and “Sexy Monster,” but it was the punchline to a bad joke so, whatever. Plus, they seemed to go out of their way to show how impractical such armor is in actual combat.

    Plus, Tama as the “Queen.” You are forgiven, my child!

    They never did explain why everyone was arm-wrestling. Then again, random things like that happen when you leave a roomful of kids to their own devices. Thumb wars broke out when our teachers gave us study hall so they could go out and smoke.

    Overall the show was pretty entertaining. Dark, Orwellian undertones and all. (and considering the cast, Orwell would approve) We get cute, monster girls, as well as sarcastic social commentary, topped off with a centaur building her own Loli-Harem.

    I especially enjoy the care put into building this world. Want to know how a cat person keeps their glasses on? How a Snake person — ahem– Antarctican eats? How a Centaur drives a car? All these questions are answered in (sometimes disturbing) detail. I love that kind of care and attention in my anime.

    Plus, there’s Chii-chan’s.

    Liked by 1 person

    • OG-Man says:

      I knew the first Part would irk you… I also knew you’d approve President Angel as the “Queen”. It’s not easy being so sexy.

      That most likely was the point. Kids doing their thing when left to their own devices.

      Not a literature guy so I’ll just take your word for it and then Google it later.
      Keep in mind that it wasn’t just lolis who wanted to be with her.

      Same here. That was one of the main draws of the series for me. So much detail in the daily lives of these different magical creatures.

      Never forget the Chisters.

      Like

  10. yurimylove says:

    I just learned from the last episode that, losing an arm wrestling match could be an orgasmic experience 😂

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Pingback: Yuri Fan Showcase: The 6 Good Summer Yuri Anime that Aren’t NTR (By Zeria) | The Yuri Nation

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