Murenase! Seton Gakuen is a very funny series with a massive cast of animal girls from all walks of life (crawls of life?) ranging from the conservative naked mole rats to the flamboyant spotted hyenas. Well, there are animal guys, but, uhmm, they’re not as interesting as the animal girls mainly because they’re just animal heads on human bodies. Sure, you can admire Giraffe-kun and his homosexual lust towards Jin-kun, but if you put him in a crowd of other giraffe guys, he’s hard to tell apart. Except for the lion King-kun, though—his impressive mane makes him stand out among the other lions… his lust for the gazelle notwithstanding.
What makes Seton Academy such a joy to watch is that its humor hits the right spots because, believe or not, the shenanigans are based on scientifically accurate animal facts and behaviors. Some jokes are easy to figure out, some are too obscure for non-zoologists (or those who don’t watch entirely too many Animal Planet shows), and some jokes can be a bit disgusting and ruin your image of cute animals *cough* koalas *cough*, but what are the best ones that stood out? Honey’s Anime is here to show you the three funniest and, at the same time, the most memorable episodes of Murenase! Seton Gakuen. Oh and this list is heavy on spoilers, so tread carefully.
-- Spoilers Ahead! --
The Beluga Whale Diva — Episode 8
Jin, Ranka, and the rest of the cooking club are staying for 5 days in Seton Academy’s branch school, Sea Academy for an event. As the name suggests, Sea Academy is a school for marine life, so we get to see new scenery—the school is like an ocean resort, the uniforms for female students are swimsuits and their classrooms are underwater. Along the way, Jin and the gang meet Kana, a beluga whale who is trying to put up her own show because she couldn’t get in the school’s Dolphin Synchronized Swimming Club. But since Ranka was duped by Jin into helping Kana (so Jin and Hitomi can spend time together alone), the cooking club ends up spending their time at Sea Academy preparing to put on a show for Kana and show the dolphins that Kana is a perfect member for them… Forget the fact that beluga whales are larger and, in terms of agility, they can’t keep up with the dolphins.
Episode 8 tells an interesting story of a whale wanting to be with the dolphins, and we get to learn some interesting facts like how dolphins and whales are similar, bottlenose dolphins sleep by turning half of their brain off, beluga whales are great singers, and an obscure fact of observed homosexual behaviors among male giraffes. The episode ends with a fantastic display of hard work that is only possible with the help of friends, and yes, including the animal-hating Jin.
Yena, the Manliest Girl — Episode 7
Yena is having an identity crisis—is Yena a male hyena or a female hyena? Due to various circumstances and hard-hitting painful facts said by Jin-kun, Yena questions her manhood and decides to attend Seton Academy as a female, complete with girl uniform. Yena doesn’t know how to act feminine so Yena approaches Hitomi and tries to copy her charm and body language. While Yena does successfully adopt a feminine mentality, though, it’s is so unnatural for her. Will Yena give in to pressure and be a woman? Or go wild, free, and be respected as a powerful male animal?
Yena’s character can be interpreted in two ways: Yena’s gender dysphoria is a reference to hyenas’ matriarchal society where females are the pack leaders, they are more aggressive due to their high testosterone levels, they are larger than males, and they are known for their infamous psuedo-penis. Yena thinks she’s a male because of her elongated member and males are usually the leader of a group or pack. Or Yena is more comfortable being whatever they want to be and wants society to accept them for what they are—a male hyena who loves kicking ass. Whichever side you’re on, Yena is one of the most interesting characters in Seton Academy, whether they wear a skirt or a pair of pants.
Seton Academy Loves David Attenborough — Episode 4
In episode 4, we are introduced to Yena, the spotted hyena, who is fearless and is strong enough to beat a pack of lions. In reality, hyenas are excellent hunters, are indeed more successful than lions, and they can beat a lion together as a pack, as illustrated by the narrator. There’s nothing spectacular about this, but if you have a keen eye, you’ll notice the illustration of a lion surrounded by a pack of hyenas we saw in the episode was taken from BBC’s television documentary series “Dynasties”, narrated by documentary legend, David Attenborough.
In the documentary, the young lion ventured off his territory and came across a pack of hyenas, who are not too happy with the furry trespasser. A pack of hyenas can actually kill a male lion, but thankfully, another lion, its brother, came to the rescue and fended off the angry hyenas. This scene of the lion against the hyenas may not have been fully depicted in Seton Academy, but depicting the imagery of this moment is a solid indication that Seton Academy, as wacky as it may be, did its homework by referencing from an existing documentary!
Watching Seton Academy is like a guessing game—an animal girl gets introduced, figure out what kind of animal she is, and try to guess what her personality, her quirks and her shortcomings are. We’ve seen animals from prehistoric times to modern ones, we’ve seen marine animals doing their thing, and now season 2 will feature the insect kingdom! The many great moments are endless! But if you just want to see more of Hitomi in compromising situations, well, no one can blame you, actually.