In the country of Kuchen (a fictional island off the coast of Europe), the top graduates from the elite and prestigious Rosenstolz Academy go on to become members of the Strahl, a body of political advisors to the king. Meine Liebe follows the lives of five Strahl candidates attending the academy in 1935.
What’s really going on
Meine Liebe means “my love”, and from this we can deduce that it is a HARD GAY anime series (real men, I urge you to look away before you start feeling emasculated). The story follows five young men desperately holding onto their love for each other against an encroaching tide of heterosexuality, not to mention outsiders attempting to ‘penetrate’ their inner circle.
The Inner Circle
Orpherus (Orphe): Technically the lead male, Orphe is a blonde bishie committed to justice and the people. As a child, he loved his sister Robertine, but when she got engaged to another man, he became jealous and slowly awakened to the folly of getting involved with women.
Although he longs for the sweet embrace of Lui or the experience of Isaac, he will settle for childhood friend Ed or the admiring Naoji if necessary.
Eduard (Ed): The bastard son of Duke Braunschweig, Ed had a difficult time growing up in the Braunschweig household thanks to his evil stepmother and her daughters. After his sister was taken away, the only positive female figure in Ed’s life was removed, and he turned to childhood friend Orphe for comfort.
Naoji: A quiet young man from Japan, Naoji struggles with his self-esteem issues, and needs constant love and attention. Although he greatly admires Orphe, the true love of his life is Lui, and he will often play butler to his beloved.
Camus: A Flower Otome and owner of the Mystic Rose Quartz gem, Camus is gifted with mysterious powers, such as the ability to talk to flowers. Due to his frail constitution, Camus spent his childhood at home with his brother, but it was his cousin Lui who showed him the possibilities that awaited in the wider world.
Ludwig (Lui): With his keen intellect and luxuriously long hair, Lui is the ‘shadow king’ of the show, and often the one who saves the day. Although no man can ever be up to his level, he can pick and choose from amongst the lesser bishies, and usually settles on Orphe, Camus and Naoji.
Isaac: A reporter from England, Isaac is an experienced man who comes to Kuchen looking for fresh blood. He soon settles on Orphe as his plaything, although the event of season two see him end up in a long term relationship with Beruze.
Bartholomew: The headmaster of Rosenstolz, and long time lover of the King. Barty is always on hand to promote the path of gay and oversee the development of his students.
The King: As the ruler of Kuchen, the King must maintain the hard gay precepts of his kingdom. In season one, his brother attempts to overthrow him so that a new, heterosexual, regime can begin, but fortunately he is defeated.
Beruze: A teacher at Rosenstolz, Beruze is a bastard son who remains bitter about never being able to become a Strahl candidate. Driven by jealousy, he seeks to destroy the kingdom- if he can’t have the love of a man, then no one can.
Griffith: An ambitious businessman with the same special powers as Camus. He tries to lure Camus to his side.
Ishtar: The only child of the Vermilia family, Ishtar is raised as ‘son and heir’ to her father’s title. During her brief stint as an exchange student at Rosenstolz, she attempts to seize power, but makes a fatal mistake in trying to seduce Lui.
Josef: A disillusioned former Strahl who discovers the joys of women. Josef is shown the error of his ways by the ‘inner circle’.
Josef Torger: Once I was a Strahl Candidate just like all of you, happy in the company of my own inner circle. But then I entered politics- and I discovered women.
Ludwig: How vulgar.
Camus: This place is evil! *faints*
Ishtar: Ludwig, I- I thought you were on my side!
Ludwig: You were foolish to think you could seduce me, Ishtar- I need MEN.
Beruze: My father abandoned me, never taught me how to love other men as a good parent should- because of that, I could never become a Strahl candidate, never join the inner circle!
Orphe: Isaac is an experienced man who could teach us much.
Ludwig: Orpherus, do not let another man touch you. I am all that you need.
Orphe and Naoji are on a treasure hunt together.
Naoji: Orphe, the girls are following us- what should we do?
Orphe: Quick, Naoji, let’s jump out the window and escape their feminine evils!
Meine Liebe Wieder
The second season of Meine Liebe sees the start of a new term at Rosenstolz, and also introduces a few new faces.
Bernard: Appointed as headmaster after Barty’s disappearance, Bernard promises to bring sweeping changes to the school; to this end, he bans all hard gay activities.
Gerald: A new teacher at Rosenstolz, appointed by Barty to protect the sacred ways of hard gay.
Eilos: A member of the faculty at Rosenstolz, and a minor face of evil.
Nicholas: Leader of the ‘three newbies’, an ambitious trio seeking to enter the inner circle. He pretends to support Bernard’s new regime in order to get closer to Lui.
Daniel: A rival Otome, Daniel is a double agent who appears to be working for Eilos but is actually loyal to the path of gay.
Elmunt: The most benign member of the ‘three newbies’, Elmunt has long held a torch for Camus, and uses his onscreen time in season two to develop a relationship with him. He even becomes the Dull Brown Rock Flower Otome in order to get closer to his beloved.
Starting tomorrow- episode-by-episode parodies of Meine Liebe Wieder!