Netsuzou TRap – Anime Series Review

Episodes: 12

Genre(s): Romance, Drama

Aired: Jul 2017 to Sep 2017

Also known as: Netsuzou Trap -NTR-, 捏造トラップ―NTR―

Summary: Feeling nervous about her first boyfriend, Yuma turns to her childhood friend, Hotaru, for some advice. In response, Hotaru starts making sexual advances towards Yuma that go beyond mere “practice.” As these girls continue to have secret trysts behind their boyfriends’ backs, the situation gets more and more messy and complicated. What will be the conclusion for this soap opera?

Review: Sometimes a series will come around and most people will either love or hate it. The middle ground is somehow nowhere to be found.

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I’ve talked about this before, but I believe that Netsuzou TRap is such a series. I’ve also mentioned that a black-and-white mentality commonly arises when it comes to discussion revolving around said series. People are also prone to insulting others when it comes to their opinions. All of this is silly and hateful. Don’t be that sort of person.

To be clear, I’m not a fan of Netsuzou TRap. If you’re looking for a more positive appraisal of the series, you should go read Lethargic Ramblings’ post where he talks about why he enjoyed watching Netsuzou TRap. He makes interesting points that are largely based on his personal tastes and preferences, but that doesn’t weaken his stance in the slightest. If anything, it’s more impressive that he knows what he likes and that he’s standing firm in the face of naysayers.

See? People can disagree and still be civil.

As for my own opinion, I would now like to talk about why I think this series fell short. I have two reasons and both are framed within the yuri anime genre.

First of all, there’s no romantic pay-off to be found. The girls are already making out with each other when the series starts and we’re forced to see them struggle with lies, manipulation, and obviousness for 12 episodes before they finally reach a mutual decision. But by that point, they’ve done so much kissing that it feels like nothing has really changed between the two of them.

Furthermore, the audience is also left apathetic to their situation due to their selfish and twisted natures (they can’t hold a candle to Hotaru’s boyfriend, Fujiwara, in terms of awful personality, however). Much like Sakura Trick, the excessive kissing scenes are milked for fanservice and I’m left underwhelmed. Fetishizing something to such a degree is dull and should have been handled with restraint. On the other hand, a quick, quiet kiss in episode 11 of Hina Logi felt much more rewarding in comparison. After many episodes of tension, the two girls in Hina Logi finally come to terms with their feelings and the audience benefits. Sometimes less is more.

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Secondly, homosexuality is consistently mocked and berated throughout the series. A lot of said statements came from the misanthropic jerk, Fujiwara, but Hotaru gets in on it, as well. It may have been included for the sake of realism, as a lot of people in real life seem to reject homosexuality and such, but having characters excessively criticize lesbian love as being less “real” compared to heterosexual romance for most of the series leaves a bad impression.

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I guess what I’m trying to get at is that there were many other yuri manga that could have been adapted into anime. We already receive so few anime that’s actually yuri every year that we actually have to rope in CGDCT series under this category so we’re not stuck talking about a handful of shows if we’re specifically talking about yuri series. And in my opinion, NTRap‘s controversial and alarmist premises is not a good look for the genre. This isn’t what yuri anime needed. Give me realistic characters. Give me characters who fall in love with other characters for actual reasons. Give me characters who maintain healthy and loving relationships because there are already tons of dysfunctional ones out there in both anime and real life.

That’s my personal stance on romance in anime as a whole, at any rate. It’s probably a byproduct of my own failed love life, as one particular individual who felt he had the authority to label things once said.

The pacing is sloppy and rushed since each episode essentially lasts for only 7 minutes (two minutes are lost to the OP and the ED). Actually, the OST is rather good as the emotional scenes are paired with lovely instrumental pieces (I’m unfairly in love with piano pieces, sorry). I found the OP to be rather forgettable outside of the opening guitar riff, but wow, the 3 EDs were all amazing. I wish we got to hear more than just 30 seconds of each ED. I’m also in disbelief that an anime series with such short episodes received 3 different ED songs.

The art is lackluster and lazy. Several instances of off-model faces popped up and the background work just feels incomplete. I just thought that everything felt cheap whenever I watched an episode.

3-185

Verdict

NTRap was not my cup of tea and I actually think most other yuri anime would be more enjoyable to watch. The fact that it excessively fetishizes and berates homosexual relations only served to worsen my impression of the series as a whole (and harm the yuri anime genre).

If you’re in the market for a (manga) series that shows life-like characters getting into messy situations, then you should read Watashi no Sekai wo Kouseisuru Chiri no You na Nani ka. I’m of the opinion that this series would have definitely outshone Netsuzou TRap if it was the one to have received an anime adaption as it’s both engaging yet repulsive in ways that NTRap could never achieve. It also touches upon several character dynamics that are interesting, problematic, and probably not that healthy, actually. But that’s all gravy for people into such content, right? Read more about the manga series by checking out Zeria’s post over here.

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16 thoughts on “Netsuzou TRap – Anime Series Review

  1. People can have a civil conversation about anime with differing opinions?! What craziness is this?! XD

    Everything you highlight is exactly how I feel about the show as we talked about in one of the previous episode reviews. I mean the sense of fetishizing the relationship was always a big negative for me especially with all the melodrama revolving around the leads, as you said obvious, attraction that was far too noticeable even out of the gate. I have not yet put myself through the final episodes but if none of the new episodes changed your opinion then I think it probably won’t change mine either.

    I agree that there are so many more sources out there for better yuri adaptations. Is it right to bash others for liking this show however? I mean no, not at all, but there is also the notion that a show like this creates if it garners enough appeal. There is always this catch 22 for shows like this, where even if they are not the cream of the crop, because they might get popular they will create the staple/rule for years to come. SAO comes to mind for modern anime’s fascination with “trapped in a video game like setting”. Not to say that any good has come out of it, and certainly people shouldn’t be berated for enjoying and liking it, yet at the same time there is a part of you that if you didn’t like it that you wish this does not become the norm rather than a thoughtful and well paced yuri narrative.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m breaking new ground here!! c:

      Mmmm we definitely did agree about the series in an earlier post. I didn’t much care for the fetishization or the melodrama, either. I think you’re right about the last few episodes, too!

      Mmm there’s so many. Zeria talks about a few in her comment if a direction similar to Netsuzou Trap is to prioritized. Alas, Citrus is coming out and I’m not excited for that one, either.

      Mmm it isn’t alright, but the ability for a series to set a trend is something fearsome. I think there’s little chance of that happening with Netsuzou Trap, though. Maybe. I really hope so!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I have read the manga (which I didn’t like much) but I did not see the anime. This said, I agree with most of your views based on the Manga alone except that I would never call this “romance” by any means. Mild psychological thriller maybe? And I feel odd for even saying this but I didn’t find the relationship that fetishized. The characters independently of the relationship, sure. But not the actual relationship.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ah, good point about the romance being debatable.

      I felt that the relationship was a bit too glamorized considering that they’re shown sucking face very frequently. But that’s also the purpose behind their trysts in the first place. Now you have me a bit uncertain, wahaha.

      Like

  3. Watashi Sekai would’ve definitely made a better anime, as would Octave. It’s not like the themes and topics in NTR haven’t been explored before; they’ve just been explored by much better mangaka in a much more tasteful way.

    If I were to list my biggest issue with NTR, it’s the romanticization of abuse. That is to say, Hotaru constantly gaslights and straight up sexually assaults Yuma, but because she’s a girl it’s not portrayed as an actual problem. It follows the frankly disgusting logic that consent doesn’t matter if the one being abused likes it. Given that they have a theoretically happy ending and Hotaru never gets rebuked for this at all, I can’t see it as anything but an endorsement. Hotaru’s refusal to admit her feelings is portrayed as wrong, but the way she abuses Yuma isn’t, and that’s my biggest problem with a show that’s full of them.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Mmm, yeah, Octave would have worked as well. NTRap is simply outclassed.

      Excellent point about how mental and emotional abuse is seemingly shown as being okay. Hotaru gets away scot-free, too, so I gotta agree with your stance about how it was basically endorsed. Fujiwara is guilty of this, too, but at least Yuma called him out on his domestic violence. Meanwhile, Hotaru isn’t in the wrong, apparently. Ah, I’m a bit put-out I didn’t touch upon this.

      Looking forward to your upcoming video about this series.

      Like

  4. Well, I don’t think I’m goi g to be watching this. Even though the episodes are short, having followed your weekly posts for this and now the full series review, I can honestly say that this is not a series that I am getting excited for at all. As usuall though your review was a fun read 😊 Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. People being civil about dissenting opinions? My, what unicorn utopia are thou referring to.

    I loved the point Zeria made about about gaslighting and trivialized abuse in the show. I think we have have talked about that in an episode? Not sure. Anyway, yeah, very good point. Abuse in same-sex relationships ain’t any less valid jfc. Already, scoiety is reluctant to see women as abusers and oh god, we don’t need to reinforce that crap. People can be evil dicks regardless of gender or sexual orientation.

    And great review, Remy! Love how you’ve pointed out the issues with this series in a logical and concise manner!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s something that is rather uncommon, I’ll admit. ;__;

      Zeria really nailed it, yeah. I believe we did to some degree! My memory also fails me.
      Abuse definitely isn’t okay in any form, I agree. Double standards are the standard, it seems. As you said, terrible people can come from any gender or orientation!

      Thanks, D! I tried my best to be logical and careful with this post, so I’m glad to hear you think I succeeded, haha.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Thanks a lot for referencing my own post on this show! I really appreciate it and I’m glad you consider it a good example of a more positive perspective.

    I really enjoyed this post. In all honesty I find it to be the most valuable critique of the show I’ve read, because you avoided slandering those that like the show and approached it with a positive mindset despite not fully enjoying it. It’s a nice change from the distasteful comments I’ve seen from many others 😛

    I don’t even disagree with all your points either. I too was pretty annoyed by how homosexuality was portrayed as immoral in the series, particularly by Fujiwara’s comments. That was… really uncomfortable, although I’d also argue that it’s not too far removed from how many people in the world would see their relationship.

    I’ve also taken your recommendation and I’ve actually started reading Watashi no Sekai. Really enjoying it so far!

    Anyhow, thanks for sharing your thoughts on this. Excellent post as always!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh, you’re very welcome. It was a very well-written post!

      Ah, yeah, slandering other viewers is not admirable behavior and should just stop. It’s ridiculous! But I’m glad you enjoyed reading this post.

      Yeah, Fujiwara made it really easy to dislike him with what was coming out of his mouth. Alas, some people seem to think like him and would say the same things about Yuma and Hotaru, which is a shame.

      I’m glad you’re enjoying it! I couldn’t stop reading it!

      Oh, your words are too kind. Thank you and thanks for stopping by!

      Liked by 1 person

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