Redline is the best anime movie I have ever seen. By which I mean it is the best anime I’ve ever seen and the best movie I’ve ever seen. While this summer season is certainly one for the books, it’s not delivering anything quite like that movie (and it wouldn’t be fair to ask it to). But because the movie’s now available free on youtube,* and because this is definitely the most fun season to be a part of since subs of the movie became available roughly 2 years ago, I decided to pay tribute by summarizing how everyone’s doing at (roughly) the halfway hash in the words of Sweet JP and co.
[Warning: Spoilers, if that kind of thing bothers you.]
This week’s installment of WataMote was probably the most painful watch yet, but offered proof-positive that Oonuma Shin is enjoying the hell out of himself. From the start, where he scattered the character design roughs over Tomoko talking about creating a character, to the ED, where he just straight-up made a viral video for the fun of it, this episode consistently spoke to how much fun the people at Silver Link making this are having.* It’s more fun than Tomoko, that’s for sure.
This time, we cover several topics, including the inspiring success of crowdfunded anime since our last show, several bits of recent anime news (both depressing and intriguing), and the rockin’ Summer 2013 slate of anime.
WataMote doesn’t really have a consistent sense of episode structure in a way that some comedies do. Contrary to last week’s, where the rain and the cold bits split the episode, this week’s show ran through a series of 3 skits. The underwear one invoked some legitimate pity, and had a fairly touching conclusion.* However, the others (the nightmare and the molestation one) were based around karmic payback for Tomoko’s stupidity. All of which was accompanied by the series’ typical visual panache and some nigh-flawless transitions.
Kuroki is such a fun comedy character. I often struggle with anime comedies where the protagonist is a nice-guy loser because I want to root for them so much and they keep getting unlucky in ways that totally aren’t their fault. Kuroki’s a much-improved version of the loveable-but-luckless archetype; she’s got the courtesy to dig her own grave much of the time, turning situations that would be just kind of sad into some righteously hilarious karmic payback.
The biggest potential pitfall for WataMote as a show is that it is essentially one joke retold countless numbers of times. However, the series’ greatest strength is that it’s made by people who understand exactly what that means for a comedy.
Based on what I’ve seen of reactions to Free on the internet, it seems like a large quantity of people are ruling it out with one glance at the promo material rather than 20 minutes of episode time. It’s becoming increasingly obvious how much of a shame that is, because this show is complete in ways it didn’t even have to be to be an enjoyable ride.
When P.A. works gets ambitious and does cool crap like this show, it’d be a disservice to the material to just have one reviewer. We’re breaking down the not-at-all-token arsty show of the new season, Uchoten Kazoku, buddy cop style!
Today’s Monday, and it’s been about a week since the first summer anime have aired. A few are on second episodes now, but I’m not going to end up covering them because WataMote clinched a lock on my open Monday slot.