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My Dress-Up Darling Episode 11 Review – Best In Show

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My Dress-Up Darling Episode 11 Review – Quick Summary

In My Dress-Up Darling Episode 11, “I Am Currently at a Love Hotel,” Marin Kitagawa introduced Wakana Gojou to a new slice of life manga. He really enjoyed it, though he didn’t know what the term “succubus” meant. Marin was more than happy to explain it to him. Did the explanation change Wakana’s opinion of the manga? Will he be able to make a succubus cosplay for Marin? And if he does, where will they find a studio that resembles the manga’s scenes?

Note: This post may include spoilers, so be cautious.

Favorite Quote from My Dress-Up Darling Episode 11

My Dress-Up Darling Episode 11: Marin enjoyed explaining the definition of "succubus" a little too much!

Wow, she looked happy to explain the concept of succubus to Wakana! Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.

Marin and Wakana are so good together that I’m picking a quick exchange between the two of them as my favorite quote. 

Marin suggested they stop by a manga cafe, where Wakana got to sit uncomfortably close to Marin. She introduced him to a slice of life manga where a cute succubus tried to convince an aspiring light novelist to go to sleep. Seems the writer preferred to write in the wee hours of the morning.

Wakana agreed that the manga was very calming. The only thing he didn’t get, he said, was what a succubus was. So Marin explained it.

“Basically, they’re girl demons,” she said happily (05:17). “They make men have pervy dreams, and then they suck up all their semen and kill them!”

I had to pause at this point for two reasons. First, her happy delivery had me laughing so hard I was afraid I was going to miss Wakana’s reaction. The second reason was I wanted to give myself time to decide if he was going to freak out in embarrassment or switch to Stern Wakana Mode.

He switched to SWM, saying (05:28), “What part of that is a tranquil, everyday life?”

Seriously, these two are great together!

Best in Show Moment for My Dress-Up Darling Episode 11

My Dress-Up Darling Episode 11: The phone ringing came quite as a surprise!

Japan has universal health care, don’t they? Good thing – I think Wakana is going to need to consult with a cardiologist! Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.

Setup: Wakana is a Professional!

My favorite scene in this episode captured a moment of intimacy with delicate, beautiful accuracy. No, I’m not kidding. It might be the best example I’ve seen in fiction. You know what? After watching the first ten episodes of this series, I’m not in the least bit surprised. 

There’s so much to like about this moment. It started with complete innocence. Marin had booked a “love hotel” for their photoshoot of Marin dressed as the succubus Liz-kyun. She picked it because she had seen a picture of one of the rooms online, and the room was a dead-ringer for the protagonist Kaname-kun’s room. She said she didn’t realize it was a love hotel until it was too late.

My Dress-Up Darling Episode 11: I'm not convinced Marin was unaware of the studio's nature!

I really don’t think that’s her sad face. Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.

I’m not sure I believe her, but that’s not the innocent part. The innocent part was when they were just about done taking pictures. There was a particular shot they both wanted to recreate from the manga. Liz-kyun had the idea to sing a lullaby to Kaname-kun. Wakana took a picture of Marin/Liz-kyun singing, but it wasn’t quite what they wanted. That’s when Wakana came up with the idea to lie on the bed and have her straddle him. That way, she could look down on him and sing as he took the picture, which was how the shot had been composed in the manga.

Think about that for a second. Wakana just asked a scantily clad Marin to sit on top of him. Wouldn’t he immediately freak out? No, because he was focused on the mission, just like Wakana always is! That’s what makes the setup for this moment so effective – it was perfectly in character.

Delivery: Marin and Wakana Gaze Into Each Other’s Eyes

They got the shot, and they were both ecstatic at how well it turned out. That’s when they heard the couple in the room next door. Next door, in a love hotel. In an instant, the two of them became aware of just how close they were to each other.

That’s the kind of moment a lesser show might have portrayed humorously. Instead, My Dress-Up Darling played it straight, with an attention to detail that blew me away. Wakana panicked because of how his body reacted; totally expected for someone that age. Marin felt his reaction, and though her panic was nowhere near as deep as his, she knew the situation was dangerous. Then he sat up and grab her waist to lift her off. Her loud (and very cute, I might add) gasp froze him. The phone went flying. It hit and turned off the light. They sat there, starting at each other, lit only the phone’s glow.

My Dress-Up Darling Episode 11: Marin felt the world shift beneath her.

The succubus senses a change in her environment! That’s funnier if you imagine reading it in a nature documentary voice. Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.

For a few seconds, they just breathed and looked at each other, Marin’s hands clutched over her mouth. Then ever so slightly, he drew her closer. Her legs, which had been frozen in mid air when he grabbed her waist, began to relax. Her hands dropped from her mouth and the two began to lean closer.

That’s when the phone rang (20:22).

I’ve seen a lot of movies and shows in my long life. I can’t recall a single scene that better captured the anticipation of physical intimacy. The scene portrayed that moment as the most natural thing in the world and the most profound thing in the world. The moment was beautiful in its authenticity.

And you know what? I can’t think of two more deserving people!

What did you think of Marin’s insecurity about trying to wear pigtails? What were your favorite moments in the episode? Feel free to let me know in the comments!

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4 thoughts on “My Dress-Up Darling Episode 11 Review – Best In Show

  1. I totally agree about the accuracy! I think the thing I love most about this anime is how it hits all the rom-com tropes but in a way that feels down to earth and realistic. And moments like that in the love hotel, despite being in an absurd situation, still feel consistent with their characters and resulted in a truly intimate moment that was much more impactful because of how the tension had built up, and how Wakana had been so innocently unaware before. He’s never pervy, despite being attracted to her, and he always prioritises her comfort and respecting her as a person over his own desires, without just coming across as oblivious or not interested in her at all – which is why their relationship feels so authentic and wholesome. Ahh, I seriously love this show! Their relationship feels so real and healthy!

    1. You mentioned “real and healthy.” That makes me realize that the “healthy” part is a lot of what I like about this show. They both are just nice people, and they support each other’s interests. It’s one of the most healthy relationships I can think of!

      Much less punchy than Taiga and Ryuuji, and way less stabby than Princess Connect’s Eriko and Yuuki!

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