What’s it about? Master Sergeant Kamoi Tsubame has recently left military service and is looking for a job, preferably one that will let her work with a “tiny young white girl” she can dress up. She happens across a want-ad for a maid and finds herself the caretaker of Misha, a girl who recently lost her mother and managed to drive off every other maid her father has hired.
CONTENT WARNING for discussion of pedophilia and predatory caretakers; NSFW screenshots
It’s a well-known fact that I ask for the bottom-of-the-barrel shows here at AniFem. Call it a personal form of therapy; an escape from the nightmare of the headlines. But even my battle-hardened experience was tested to its limits this time around.
Never mind the zombie idols—this is the true horror show of the season.
I can’t help but feel as though someone is playing a cruel trick on the queer women of anime fandom. The titular maid is incredibly buff (she even puts last season’s NK Cell to shame) and the ending theme is entirely dedicated to scenes of her working out.
Were this simply a series about a hyper-competent, oblivious maid forming a familial bond with a lonely kid, it would probably be perfectly watchable. It certainly has fluid and inventive animation.
Ah, can you imagine, watching an anime about a little girl that didn’t deliberately invite the audience to think about molesting her…
Sorry, just. Gimme a minute. I want to live in that world so bad.
The shocking thing about UzaMaid is that we’ve apparently blown right past the “dogwhistling its lungs out but pretending to be innocuous” pedobaiting of Dragon Maid’s Lucoa and right into openly calling a spade a spade. A flashback shows Tsubame rejecting a classmate on the grounds that “she’s not interested in women who’ve started menstruating” and waxing poetic at length about how girls who haven’t gone through puberty are like angels.
I am dead surprised the localization team didn’t find a way to work “nymphet” in there. But then, Lolita actually is a horror novel, regardless of what cultural osmosis might tell you; it deserves better than this.
The overtness is a nauseating surprise, but what makes it worse is the particular kinds of jokes UzaMaid decides to mine from that setup. Poor Misha is like a failed Kevin McCallister, desperately trying to catch the invading predator in her house on tape so that she can get her absent father to step in.
Each time she fails, the soundtrack underscores the moment with Psycho-riff strings…and then sinks into another looooong indulgence of molestation or, if it’s feeling reserved, a camera focus on Misha’s butt, chest, or blushing humiliated face. It wants to be Bugs Bunny’s “The Abominable Snow Rabbit,” but with a heaping spoonful of Kodomo no Jikan on top. The result tastes of putrid, callous exploitation.
This is the story of a young girl whose father refuses to believe that their caretaker is a molester (because said molester can pass themselves off as normal and the child as overreacting), and everything the child does to try and protect herself is a futile, paper-thin defense doomed to crumble against the superior strength and training of the adult preying on her.
And while we’re at it, because God help me someone somewhere is gonna say it, the show acknowledging that this is horrifying doesn’t magically cleanse the premise, given that Tsubame basically always wins and the camera loves nothing more than to inhabit her leering mindset. All it does is top the normalization of pederasty with a trivialization of CSA survivors.
But hey, if all you care about is the animation, it’s the prettiest-looking child molestation comedy of the year.