Netflix Teen Thriller Anime Has More Science Fiction Than You Might Expect

By Nina Phillips | Published

Rascal Does Not Dream of Bunny Girl Senpai, at first glance, looks like an anime filled with fanservice. After all, how else would you explain a teenage girl in a skimpy bunny outfit? After watching this series, I was pleasantly surprised to see it was quite different than what I’d assumed from first appearances, filled with science-fiction elements and a heavy respect for the stresses of being a teenager.

Starts Weird But It Settles Down

The story starts with a high school student, Sakuta Azusagawa (Kaito Ishikawa). He’s in the library and notices a teenage actress, Mai Sakurajima (Asami Seto), wandering around. Despite her dressed in a rather skimpy bunny girl outfit, no one else notices her. 

Initially wanting to get closer to this famous actor, Sakuta agrees to help her solve the mystery. Along the way, he learns about a phenomenon called “Adolescence Syndrome,” which plagues girls during stressful times throughout their adolescence. Not only does he end up helping Mai, but several other girls suffering from this problem. 

Closer To A Psychological Thriller

On My Anime List, Rascal Does Not Dream of Bunny Girl Senpai has an average rating of 8.23. It’s also a very popular anime, ranking #52. There’s a reason it’s so popular, and it’s not simply because of the cute girls. 

If you pay attention to the genres, comedy, which you’d usually expect on a show like this, isn’t one of them. Instead, it’s considered a psychological and supernatural show. While there are some comedic moments to break the tension, they’re minimal. 

Perfect For Female Viewers

Rascal Does Not Dream of Bunny Girl Senpai is considered a Seinen, like Beserk, Psycho-Pass, Ergo Proxy, and One Punch Man, which means it targets young adult men. This makes sense just from a glance, with the skimpy clothes and somewhat perverted main character. However, the Seinen category is extremely broad, and with the way the show handles being a young woman, I think it’s a great show for most females as well, teenagers and young adults especially. 

There’s A Lot Of Science Explanations

It’s not a perfect show by any means. The pacing is slow in places, and the science is often overexplained, detracting from the moment. However, if you’re willing to push through these rather minimal problems, you’ll find a beautiful series that explains the stress of being a teenager. 

When my partner wanted me to watch this show, I was initially hesitant. It looked like one I would normally pass on with a harem and not a lot of plot. Having gone in completely blind, I had no idea what awaited me. 

Romance Is In The Backseat

There is romance in the show, but it shows itself in the mutual respect and trust our two main characters build. They are both dry and sarcastic, often spitting out weak insults to show they care. 

The romance is just a backdrop for a problem plaguing many girls in Rascal Does Not Dream of Bunny Girl Senpai. Though Sakuta is a bit of a pervert, he never pushes boundaries or takes advantage of a situation. When he meets those with problems, he works hard to make sure he can figure out the issue and helps them with whatever difficult decision they’re facing without trying to be the hero. 

Multiple Ways To Stream


All in all, there’s a lot of respect for the female characters which I really appreciated. I think this show did a great job showing you can have a character with faults and is even a little more of a… well, rascal, without having to demean women or take away from the main story. 

If you want to watch Rascal Does Not Dream of Bunny Girl Senpai, it’s available on Netflix, Crunchyroll, and Hulu. Currently, there is only one season and three movies. However, since the light novel is ongoing and the show is so popular, there’s a chance that there could be more seasons in the future.