(Aka Onii-sama e..)
Nanako Misonou has just been accepted into Seiran Academy - an exclusive fuzoku-style high school where most of the girls had entered the system at elementary or junior high. This is a rich school with all of the upper class amenities (it even has an Equestrian Club!). Into this society, Nanako and her childhood friend Tomoko enter. Since they are new, they are considered outsiders by the class-conscious students. On their first day of school, they meet the "Magificent Ones" ("Kaoru no Kimi ", "Miya-sama ", and "Hana no Saint-Juste ") - older girls who are practically worshipped by the other students. Nanako also meets the obsessive Mariko Shinobu who has several goals: #1-to get in the Seiran Sorority and #2-to become Nanako's best friend. The way she goes about #2 can get pretty creepy since she'll be very loyal to Nanako while stopping at nothing to get what she wants. To her surprise, Nanako gets into this Sorority along with Mariko and, since she is still the outsider, becomes the victim of much cruelty among the other girls...particularly Aya Misaki who was SURE she would get in. The title of this series comes from the letters that Nanako writes to her "brother "...actually her former cram school teacher. These letters form a sort of diary which chronicle her experiences at the school, the people that she meets, and ocassionally, of utter despair.
Ah, lesbian Melodrama, what fun. Y'know, just once, it'd be nice for "Surprising Twists!" (TM) to actually be, oh I don't know, actually surprising. Just about all of the reviews I've seen for this have been glowing, talking about the wonderfully written characters and amazing art, and the heartwrenching story...what planet are you people from? This show was almost as melodramatic as Sukeban Deka (and I think they're even drawn and directed by the same people...all the more reason to leave this alone) with the excessive super-dramatic freeze shots. The art is also pretty ugly--I really do not care for the frilly bourgeois (as one character puts it) art style of many of the characters...not to mention the fact that despite how very masculine Saint-Juste and Kaoru both look and act, they are supposed to be women..suuuuuure. Yeah, I'll believe that when I see some actual signs of breasts on them. Everything in the story is just so forced it's difficult to get any kind of good experience out of it. You want a well-written heartbreaking story, try watching Barefoot Gen or Grave of the Fireflies. Everything moves so painfully slow and there is very little connection with the characters. So they're screwed up because it's a "realistic high school story"...most of us would rather forget about the hell of High School, not enshrine it. Yeah High School can be hell, but if you're gonna write about it, try leaving the sledgehammer drama at the door please. Really unimpressive music and art and a pathetically slow story had me so incredibly bored by the end of the tape I wanted to claw my eyes out. Unless you have a very high tolerance for stories that beat you over the head with their messages, do not bother with Brother, Dear Brother.
Herself the Elf sez: Be warned that Oniisama E is a soap opera, and as such sucks you in whether you like the show or not. Watch a few eps and you'll probably find yourself watching more even as your brain is melting.
Currently only available Fansubbed.