I continue to enjoy Amagami SS, the anime series based on a PS2 dating-sim game that probably best defines the moe genre today. In the series, the main character Junichi — as usual, an average Japanese everyman, the better for fans to identify with him — falls in love with six different girls, with the story restarting every four episodes as each girl’s path is completed. (I’ve got a theory that Junichi is really a Godmind capable of stopping and restarting time, similar to Haruhi in the Endless Eight episodes.) It’s interesting to reverse-engineer the show and see how cleverly they constructed the girls along established moe-archetypal lines. First is the senpai (upperclassmen) Haruka, the more experienced older sister type, followed by dokyusei (classmate) Kaoru, who Junichi has known for years and doesn’t usually think twice about. Next come two girls who are one year younger than the main character, super shy Sae and teasing Ai. Rihoko is Junichi’s osana-najimi, a deep concept that means “childhood friend” and describes a relationship that’s so close it’s taken for granted by both sides, thus it’s difficult for Rihiko to get Junichi to notice her romantically. Finally there’s Tsukasa. the class representative who is always proper and organized, another well-established character type since Hikari from Evangelion or so.
Amagami covers all the moe bases nicely. Which one is your favorite?