Netsuzou Trap -NTR-
Yuma Okazaki has a boyfriend named Takeda, and the two of them are moving toward the "next step" in their relationship; but suddenly Yuma's "best friend" Hotaru Mizushina starts physically "coming on" to her. Hotaru brushes this off as "pranks", or as "practice " for Yuma's relationship with Takeda (which are contradictory explanations, of course), but Hotaru's overtures are arousing feelings, and raising doubts, in Yuma's mind. Will she choose Hotaru over Takeda?
I agree with Nicoletta about Sweet Blue Flowers; that show ended just when its two protagonists were still not much more than best friends- I wanted to see the growth of their romantic relationship, too.
The current show is a yuri drama as well, but there are some problems: at 12 episodes of 9 minutes each, you're not going to get much story in the first place; and what you DO get is played as melodrama more than romance, and to my mind somewhat implausible melodrama at that. This is NOT the yuri drama you're looking for.
I'll start with Hotaru, even though Yuma is our POV character and so we're rarely actually in Hotaru's head. Yuma apparently knows much less about Hotaru than girls who are "best friends" usually do, and (extremely naively) wonders why Hotaru has had so many boyfriends. I gather that Hotaru has what we'll call a very strong libido- she later SAYS that she's with someone to satisfy her "physical needs"- and I could perfectly understand why she might want to explore having those needs gratified by someone who cares for her, like Yuma (as opposed to the guy Hotaru is currently with, named Fujiwara; the more we know about him, the creepier he seems.) I'm unsure whether this is actually a shakier foundation to build a relationship on than Fumi's apparent need to cling to another girl for emotional support was in Sweet Blue Flowers, but the WAY that Hotaru goes about this, my God! Her approaches to Yuma are basically sexual assault, and Hotaru's own comments about these unnerving overtures often seem both flippant and snide at the same time. ("Maybe I'll get ALL your 'firsts'," she tells Yuma at one point.)
Now if someone were coming on to most people in this way, they might become reluctant to see them at all, much less be alone with them; yet Yuma still visits Hotaru at her place (their families are next-door neighbors.) The show wants us to believe that, on a deeper level, Hotaru's overtures are not entirely unwelcome- that she IS in fact attracted to Hotaru on a physical as well as a "friend" basis. (Yuma DOES slap Hotaru one time, under very telling circumstances.) Yuma, after her initial confusion and uncertainty, does come to certain "revelations", but the grounds for these feelings would certainly have to come from her past- and we never really SEE her past, partly because we've only twelve nine-minute episodes, and partly because the show has other priorities (see below.) So we're TOLD these things rather than SHOWN why they might be, always a sign of weak storytelling.
And then there's Takeda. He's assertive (if inexperienced), ready to take things up to the next level with Yuma; but he backs off instantly if she's reluctant or uncomfortable, and he's perceptive enough to realize when she's feeling that way. In short, he's a considerate and caring lover, and I knew that if Yuma went the yuri route after all, I was gonna feel bad for the guy.
The show squanders much of its already short running time on cliffhangers rather than expanded character or story development (and Yuma's "revelations" could certainly have stood some expansion.) The usual crisis at the end of the episodes is the threatened revelation to Takeda of Yuma and Hotaru's physical clenches. Naiveté (and sometimes bribery) usually save the day- or at least postpone the ultimate reckoning.
Hotaru may not LOOK like a male sexist swine, but she MOLESTS much like one. I think a variant of Stig's rule about tsunderes applies here, namely, how would we feel about this character if she was male? (And how would we feel about Yuma's RESPONSE if she was getting this treatment from a male?) And then there's poor Takeda to consider. Do nice guys finish last, after all? By the end of Netsuzou Trap, you'll know. — Allen Moody
Recommended Audience: Some nudity and breast-fondling (censored by Crunchyroll.) As with Sweet Blue Flowers there's a nude scene in the opening credits, but in THIS one it might actually pop up in the show as well. Nudity and mature themes, so we'll recommend for 16 up.
Version(s) Viewed: Digital stream on Crunchyroll, Japanese with English subs.
Review Status: Full (12/12)
Netsuzou Trap -NTR- © 2017 Creators in Pack
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