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Why Rent A Girlfriend Is Hated And Criticized, Despite Being SO Popular

Rent A Girlfriend was an anime that surprised the ROM COM community back in July 2020, during the pandemic of all times.

Once the anime released it started off with Kazuya being depressed after his girlfriend dumped him to his face. Her reasoning? “I’m in love with someone else”.

Mami Nanami Quotes Rent A Girlfriend

Once this scenario passes by, Kazuya in his depressed state then finds a rental girlfriend online and pays for her services, and that’s how he meets Chizuru Mizuhara, the love of his life.

This is also the start of the controversy, the hatred towards this anime, and more because of the writing, the outcomes, and other stuff that makes the anime polarizing.

One thing being Kazuya’s lack of commitment to his later girlfriend Ruka.


Why the hate for Rent A Girlfriend?

YouTube video

The HATRED is specific. It comes from a certain set of fans and you can’t just say everyone is a hater because that’s not true.

There are valid reasons, and some reasons, at least in some cases, are more about looking in the mirror.

Let’s get into the why’s.


1. Because it’s “cringey”


I’ve watched the first season of Rent A Girlfriend and before the 5th episode I was cringing at characters like Kazuya who SIMPED so hard for other girls it was just straight up embarrassing and shameful.

He pedestalizes girls at the expense of his own self esteem and self respect, which is what simping is. And he even goes out of his way to show respect to Mami, a girl who dumped him for the fun of it.

Not to mention a girl who consistently causes trouble, gets in his way, and starts getting jealous after Kazuya gets attention from “prettier” girls Mami is threatened by.

Yet Kazuya shows her respect she doesn’t deserve.

Despite the cringey episodes of the first season, the fanservice at times, and the awkward situations, the anime still does have merit in my eyes and that’s why it’s popular even though people hate it.


2. Because it’s bad enough to spark interest


Some anime shows or regular TV shows are so bad they’re good. And they’re awful enough to attract a lot of attention. The reality TV show of the Kardashians being an example.

We saw the same thing with the Netflix produced anime Yasuke which had great intentions, but was popular for the wrong reasons (it was bad).

Rent A Girlfriend in this case is a marketable product because of its bad aspects that everyone highlights and loves to focus on (as opposed to the good bits).

The typical truth of negativity getting the most eyeballs is proof with Rent A Girlfriend. I mean if it was really so bad why would anyone bother talking about it at all, like everything else considered unworthy?


3. Manga readers know what to expect


Manga readers have been the most vocal about Rent A Girlfriend more than anyone else. In fact you could even say they’re the ones who are doing all the criticizing since their opinions are so loud.

For those who’ve read the manga they know how far the series has gone in terms of chapters, content, the relationships, Kazuya’s character progress, Chizuru Mizuhara herself, and everyone else.

They believe the manga is being milked for everything it has and that understanding is pushed onto the anime adaptation, including the now 2nd season airing this summer (2022).


4. Because it’s a cold reminder to SOME criticizing it


One thing that’s common on the internet when it comes to criticism, hatred, accusations, insults, or shaming others, is psychological projection.

This is true for all forms of media as well, not just people in general. And Rent A Girlfriend is one of the many shows some people are projecting their feelings onto.

Why? Because it probably reminds them of a time in their own life when they were also SIMPS or as pathetic (or almost as pathetic) as Kazuya Kinoshita himself.

I mean think about it. Kazuya Kinoshita is:

  • a 19-20 year old in college.
  • he’s desperate.
  • still a virgin.
  • Has no skills with girls/women.
  • Is hopeless despite trying his best.
  • Has little self esteem and doesn’t think much of himself.
  • And is the type of guy who can be manipulated because he kisses too much ass.

How many of the people watching this show or who have watched it are like that in some way, shape, or form? More than people would admit.

There’s nothing wrong with it in itself if that’s who you was or you intend to improve, but from observation a lot of criticism towards certain anime is just certain people exposing their own insecurities and pointing it outward.


What makes Rent A Girlfriend so appealing despite hatred?


1. Chizuru Mizuhara


Let’s keep it real… Chizuru Mizuhara, or “Chizuru Ichinose” is the MAIN reason the anime has shined the way it has despite all the backlash.

She carries the show so much it’s unreal. In fact there aren’t many anime you can think of where ONE main character has such an overwhelming influence like this.

She’s a rental girlfriend, but she goes to college and has dreams of being an actress. She uses her “rental girlfriend money” to fund her goals and makes no excuses.


She’s not just attractive, she has a personality, her own mindset, is actually a modest person, and doesn’t look down on others because of status, looks, or anything superficial.

As cliche as it sounds, she’s “the perfect girlfriend” as Kazuya puts it (paraphrasing).

She’s the main reason fans continue to watch and find the show appealing in some ways. This is also true for the manga.


2. Yoshiaki Kibe

Kibe Quotes Rent A Girlfriend (4)

Yoshiaki Kibe is one of the best examples of friendship and close friends in any anime, never mind romance or rom com. He’s a close childhood friend of Kazuya Kinoshita.

He’s the one who gives Kazuya a kick up the ass in the first season of Rent A Girlfriend, and even though he doesn’t get the most screentime – he has one of the best and most memorable scenes in the series.

It’s the moment between Kazuya, Chizuru, and himself when they’re all at the beach. He’s the real MVP but only a support character.

His role in this way may continue.


Aside from that…..


Some people watch the anime (or read the manga) for Mami Chan. They watch either for the drama, the fact that she can shake up the plot, and other reasons.

That’s what Mami’s role has been since the start anyway.

Some watch or did watch because they wanted to see Kazuya develop and grow, that was (and maybe is) the appeal. But most of it ends there because characters like Ruka or Sumi don’t show up too often.


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