Every kind of animated series these days seems to have an over arching plot. From animation in the west like My Little Pony Friendship is Magic, South Park and Adventure Time to the latest anime epic. I must admit I find myself missing the episodic format of entertainment from my childhood. Maybe that is why every so often I pull out a dvd copy of Undergrads or Aaagh! It’s The Mr Hell Show and just sit back and giggle without needing to follow some sort of over arching plot that I need to watch every episode in chronological order to fully understand.
It was for this reason that I found myself ecstatic that a classic lesser known anime from the past was getting a new season. I discovered the original Laughing Salesman a few years back when my wonderful other half suggested it to me, after all he knows my slightly twisted sense of humor so well. I love and adore the original series of Laughing Salesman. The older art style of the series reminded me of when I was reading Black Jack back in my early twenties and the twisted morals at the end of each episode reminded me of a twisted version of those childhood cartoons with a moral at the end of every episode.
Our title character, the laughing salesman himself Mugoro – well I think it may be an obvious statement is not exactly human but does enjoy humans. Each episode is split into two separate tales of the salesman helping the client. An over arching theme I have seen throughout the original series and this new one is this simple message; if it seems too good to be true it most likely is. Do not push your luck with the salesman because if you do it will be bad for you and hilarious for the audience.
One thing I have picked up from the new season is that this is indeed a completely new remake of the original series as I have already noticed one recycled plot from the original series. I won’t give away which one in case anyone who has been watching the new series wants to track down and watch the original. (though not on any legal streaming sites sadly with a little digging it can be found online) The opening theme ‘Don’t’ is also my favorite anime opening this season and is such an ear worm that I find myself humming the tune to myself hours after watching the latest episode.
One thing that does disappoint me about this series is that I don’t see that many anime fans writing or talking about this little hidden gem this season. So far I have only seen it mentioned on one of the anime blogs I follow and have seen hardly any online discussion for this series. The lessons within this series can open up so many discussions on morality as well as good story telling and I find myself disappointed I cannot really talk with anyone about this series. I hope my post here however encourages more anime fans to give this series a serious shot.
Also this will be the last of my first impressions, there will be no post on Oushitsu Kyoushi Haine as I feel I would not say anything different to the other first impressions of the show I have already read and really all I would be doing is mostly repeating my reaction to Kabukibu!
What anime are you loving the most this season? For me it goes to My Hero Academia and The King’s Avatar and tied in third with Attack on Titan and Laughing Salesman.
It’s censored porn….. and other than looking pretty it’s kind of really boring.
I’m not saying it has to have a deep story but if this anime was not as pretty as it is I would have dropped it before now, that being said I am four episodes in of a show with very short episodes and I find myself bored watching it. I have been ‘lucky’ enough to see the censored and uncensored versions of this show and with both I felt nothing but boredom.
There is also an issue of consent I am finding with this series and this is coming from a yaoi fan who has sat through ‘My Sexual Harassment’. (Yes there is a review of this yaoi classic and in that review I will be discussing consent in anime) So what is the ‘plot’ of this series? At a class reunion a girl I can’t even remember her name meets the guy she had a crush on in school once again, only he is a priest now. This set up alone had so much potential, exploring themes of sexuality vs religion, instead we get a priest who by the end of the first episode says he is also a man with needs. There is not enough sex even in the uncensored version for this to be used as that kind of material but at the same time given each episodes short run time there is not enough plot there to keep me as a viewer engaged.
I cannot write about this series and my first impression of it, without writing about my history with another anime. That anime being Ore no Imouto ga Konnani Kawaii Wake ga Nai aka Oriemo. When that anime came out it became the second anime for me to have a personal connection with. Like how I saw myself in Serial Experiments Lain as a teenager I saw myself when I first became a fujoshi in Kirino. From her excitement within the fandom, wanting to make new friends and even a rival with opposing views, my particular offline rival over ten years ago now, did not like yaoi but loved tentacle hentai.
I know it was not a perfect anime but when it came out it was the perfect anime for me. I have gone through big changes since first seeing Oriemo all those years ago. I’m not as public about my loves as I once was and could even be considered a shut in at this point. A lot of this has to do with social anxiety I have had since I was younger that for a time I was on top of which left me feeling on top of the world, but became worse after certain life changing incidents over the years.
Upon watching the first episode of Eromanga Sensei upon seeing Saguri I felt that connection once again. I come across as confident online much like Eromanga Sensei but like Saguri I feel the fear and pressure of the world outside of my bedroom and knowing that the creative team behind Oriemo was behind this series I have no doubt there will be laughs and tears in this series for myself.
Going into this one I must admit, my first thought was the following – Oh god not another trapped in a video game anime. Of course, I now see the idiot I am for thinking that now that I have seen the beginning of the series but you must admit these days when the term video game is mentioned in the synopsis of a series you instantly think of this cliche.
If I could describe Kabukibu! in one word it would be, forgettable. I found myself after watching the first episode remembering why I rarely these days watch anime are set in high schools that are not sports series… This was the first of three anime I watched the first episode of and dropped by the end of the first episode, though this one out of the three was the most disappointing and it is going to take something big for me to give it another go.
What makes it so disappointing for me is that it has an interesting premise, I love anime that go further into Japanese culture and an anime about Kabuki had me really intrigued. After all, all I really know about Kabuki is that is an ancient art form and that all the actors are male, this has so many possibilities to be something the fujoshi community could latch onto. What I got from the first episode was cliche after cliche after cliche. From story set up with wanting to start up a club to character types with each potential club member the main duo sort out.
Perhaps not a completely fair comparison but when I watched Cheer Boys the other month the recruitment part of the story and the introduction to the subject matter of the club was a much more entertaining watch. The first episode of Kabukibu! had a very paint by the numbers feel to it. It did not excite me, it did not make me want to learn more about the characters and it became a chore in the last ten minutes to even just finish the first episode. It’s a drop from me for this one.
The second anime everyone was talking about before the beginning of the season was, of course, My Hero Academia season 2, especially with how popular the first season was just last year. As I have stated before this was the anime that has brought me back into the shounen genre mainly because I love superhero stories. The fact that one of my favorite animes is Tiger and Bunny should be proof enough of that.
If the last season was the beginning of Midori’s journey to become the hero he wants to be then I would definitely say this season has brought us to the moment of when he has to prove not only to himself that he can and will be that hero but also to prove to the world he is ready to take that mantle of the hero! Then I see how that is going to happen and I must admit there was a part of me that inwardly cringed but at the same time I should not be surprised as this is shounen series. We are getting a tournament arc.
Don’t get me wrong this, of course, makes sense for the story, it is just I myself am not a fan of the tournament arc and it is part of the reason I stopped watching the genre. I find these kinds of arcs predictable and a lot of this has to do with the dreaded plot armor of the main character. It takes away the suspense of each battle for me and in the back of my mind I have the constant thought, this is cool and all but the main character is going to win right? Of course, this is not always the case with all series of this kind and a tournament arc can be fun in fact I think the most enjoyable tournament arc I have seen is the second season of Food Wars.
Still, My Hero Academia is still as entertaining for me so far as it was for me in the first season, so I will definitely be watching this one each week. With all the negativity in the news lately watching something like this will always brighten my mood and perhaps even help me forget for a moment, the world is pretty fucked up at the moment.
Afterthought: Note to self, do not watch this series while other people in the house are sleeping, I got so excited watching the latest ep I kind of woke someone up.
Was the wait worth it? Due to my own lack of funds since the ending of the last series I avoided reading the manga. Yes I could have like many other times have read the manga online through scanlation sites, but I must confess my readers. I only do this when there is no other way I can read a piece. If there is an English release of a manga I want to read I like to track it down, purchase it and read it in this way. It is for this reason I have been patiently waiting the return of this series in anime form.
I have sat through series ‘delays’, shitty spin offs and movies, disappointed with the lot of them waiting for the story to continue beyond the capture of Annie… the big question is, was this wait worth it?
Just like that feeling I had watching the first season all those years ago, each episode has left me on the edge of my seat. Each answered question has left more in it’s wake and with the end of each episode every cliffhanger has me feeling that beautiful frustration that comes from a story that has you hooked to come back every week. Yes I said beautiful frustration, it is a feeling of wanting more and being forced to wait, it is that feeling of knowing there will eventually be a pay off and that all your waiting will be rewarded.
Though I wish I did not have to wait this long for the series to return, I am so happy it has returned, so many anime have had frustrating endings that leave you wanting so much more and Attack on Titan could have easily become one of these series. I don’t care that I had to wait so long for the return and am just happy to see it back!