There are tons of shows which could be considered to revolve around Cute Girls Doing Cute Things. While they’re all different in subtle ways, they are also similar in other aspects and can feature the same sort of developments.
So, since this is supposed to be a top 5 list, here are 5 events you can reasonably expect to happen in most CGDCT shows. And to some degree I hate all of ’em. Your mileage, of course, may vary.
The Protagonist is Pathetic (Initially)
Or at least the protagonist starts being unskilled at whatever activity or past time or occupation she’s trying to throw herself in. This allows the audience to be filled in on certain subjects and aspects alongside this rookie who has to have things explained or demonstrated to her. This position isn’t always reserved for the protagonist, however. For instance, Princess Principal has the newbie Beatrice assume the role of the audience surrogate instead of the competent Ange.
Having a bumbling character also allows the audience to feel empathy while watching this useless girl who’s trying her best and who may or may not be steadily improving (her rate of growth really depends on the series). That could be considered cute by some.
However, sometimes a series goes too far and the character ends up becoming a bit too grating and pathetic. I know a friend who was frustrated that Aoba (the protagonist in New Game!) locked herself out twice in the first episode and wasn’t aware of what a NPC is despite being a professional 3D artist. Again, it provides the series an opportunity to explain certain terms to the audience just in case they weren’t in the know, but Aoba should really know about such elementary terms already.
A Girl Needs to go on a Diet
One girl who has been eating too much too often usually end up exercising and dieting only to lose all of their excess weight and go back to “normal” within the episode.
The topic is never thoroughly explored, which means bulimia and other eating disorders remain unmentioned. However, it’s probably a bit much to expect from a CGDCT series, to be honest.
It should be noted that Special Week from Uma Musume – Pretty Derby is consistently shown to struggle with stress eating and a huge appetite and her weight woes are never just treated as a easily solved problem, so she basically ignores the trend!
Group Play is Considered Best Play
Being with friends are often being portrayed as the height of human existence in these types of shows, which isn’t always true. Sometimes having some alone time is fine, too.
Yuru Camp was very careful to show that Rin’s preference of being a solo camper was perfectly fine and fun, too, which was a nice way to avoid this potentially off-putting generalization.
A Tomboy Feels Pressured to Become More Feminine
Which is a shame since tomboys are great. There’s really nothing wrong with female characters enjoying or doing things that are typically associated with boys. It’s basically a heteronormative thing that should stop.
The Beach Episode/Scene is Nearly Guaranteed
The infamous episode/scene archetype which features plenty of middle school / high school girls parading around in swimsuits. Some dig it and some don’t.
To be fair, sometimes things do happen and the beach episode isn’t entirely pointless. But the fact remains that a lot of anime viewers seem to think that beach episodes bring nothing to the table.
That’s all, folks.
Thanks for reading.