sasami-san@ganbaranai 1

“I won’t let you have your way today!”

Name: sasami-san@ganbaranai
Studio: Shaft
Director: Duh
First Impression: Arakawa Under the Bridge meets Denpa Onna
Ceiling: Chu2 meets Shakugan no Shana

Akiyuki Shinbo is to Shaft what Steve Jobs is to Apple. It’s hard to think of Shaft without thinking of the wholesame Shaft being Shaft moments that Shinbo introduced, just like how it’s hard to think of most Apple products without Jobs. And his touch is definitely here in sasami-san@ganbaranai (Sasami-san@CannotFestItUp), especially in the watercolor-ish look of Sasami’s room and the alternate world. And, of course, an attention to detail that only Shaft can deliver.

I was quite confused throughout the show. I had quite a few questions running through my head:

  • Why is the brother pulling a Wilson?
  • Why is the brother doing the Hare Hare Yukai dance?
  • Are the three real sisters? From the same parents? Really?
  • Was that milk chocolate or dark chocolate?
  • If Sasami cannot leave her room, how did those camera get there?
  • Should I buy a ROTH IRA or traditional IRA?
  • Magical girl show? Harem anime? Hikikomori documentary? Fanservice festival?

If Tamako Market is peppered by rabbits, then this show is peppered with gadget pr0n. I swear I have that same mouse. And Sasami’s monitors have the familiar shape of Dell Ultrasharps circa 2010.

Chiwa Saito voicing the unholy lovechild of Shana and Professor?! I’m in. Tsurugi is basically a shortie with red hair, lab coat, and a katana. I mean, how can she not be?! I like how Shaft spent a good portion of their animation budget on the battle sequences, but I didn’t like the cheesy 80s guitar riff BGM. Wait a second, I enjoyed that too. My bad. Made me feel like I’m watching Police Academy 4, Citizens on Patrol, again.

(Though I’m not sure why there needs to be chocolate monsters inhabiting a chocolate world. Is this like Lemongrab monsters living in a Lemonworld? Also, this world seems to have no other people in it besides the cast. This is fully a Shaft thing now.)

The empty world thing doesn’t work too well. The brother is obviously in Costco, and I have never seen an empty Costco before. There should be carts pushed by elderly people trying to run him over, little kids running up and down the halls with hot dogs hanging out their mouths and mustard stains on their clothes, fundraising people waiting in line to buy boxes of candy that they will resale at 3X the price, college students stocking up on cashews and ramen, idiots like me who try to get a sample of that teriyaki chicken, and housewives with shopping carts filled to the brim and blocking any possible escape route. That is Costco. There isn’t a more fucking dangerous place than Costco. Except the Costco parking lot.

(The only good part of going to Costco is munching on a victory churro afterwards.)

Breast missiles make me happy. There hasn’t been good breast missiles in anime since Mahoromatic…. and Kagami reminds me a lot of Chise from Saikano. Must be the flamethrower hand or the wings or the breast missiles.

Tama is nine years old? Really? REALLY!? Anime… oh anime.

So Sasami is tsundere towards her brother, and this emotion somehow manifests itself a la Haruhi Suzumiya on the real world. And then the three Yagami sisters must fix the disturbance in the force caused by Sasami. Isn’t this basically Haruhi with Haruhi being in on the game instead of being oblivious to it? Or maybe better example: Kyon is oblivious but Haruhi knows whats up.

When they want to do it, they are one of the best studios at animating stuff. Fluid character animations, great backgrounds, and interesting camera angles. They are also harnessing Shaft being Shaft for better effect with the normal world being normal while Sasami’s world being Sasami, like a lighter version of how witches were handled in Madoka. So far this season, only Tamako Market tops this show in animation.

(I should quality all of this with, “They are on schedule,” as the ED is clearly not done. It took them, what, six episodes before Bakemonogatari got its animated ending sequence?)

When Sasami had all her Amazon results turn to chocolates, I thought it was a commentary about how Amazon tracks your searches and purchases. I recently bought a new camera from Amazon, and now all my suggested products are either tripods or memory cards. They are scary good.

(Why are all hikikomori, even female ones, presented as fanatics of anime and manga and eroges? Surely there must be other varieties of hikikomori. There are people who do not leave their house on weekends in the fall because of football, for example. And there are people who just have anxiety issues on going outside. Not everyone is a shut-in because they want to watch Senran Kagura.)

Wait, what? Why are only some scenes censored? What’s the point of not censoring all of it? Also, it seems like Shaft isn’t even trying to disguise the censoring (like what they did in Vampire Bund). It’s almost like they forgot to censor the scenes until an hour to airtime, so they just scrambled… quick! We need to block out her ass!

Seiyuu for Hidamari‘s Yuno voices Sasami. Appropriate, I think, as I always suspect Yuno would eventually snap and toss a knife at Miyamiya.

Suggested Amazon purchase for this episode: chocolate fondue fountain. The end of this episode is basically a huge earth fondue, so why not have some chocolate fondue dessert to pass the cold winter evenings? This one has a 4+ star rating, and it is on sale. What are you waiting for?

19 Responses to “sasami-san@ganbaranai 1”

  1. My bad. Made me feel like I’m watching Police Academy 4, Citizens on Patrol, again.

    I don’t know if I want to laugh or cry that I now want to watch it again too.

    Anyway, Kagami’s pretty great with her mecha-musume schtick, but dat Tsurugi grin. I think I’m in love.

  2. Am I the only person who thought of this while watching the chocolate scene:

  3. I still don’t completely understand this show, but hey if you throw enough money at an animation studio with some kind of a random plot something good is bound to happen

  4. Glad someone else made the Kagami to Chise connection. I thought about it immediately, and then I had a sad.

  5. SHAFT essentially cut out the after-the-fact epilogue that explained everything this episode. We will see if they would fit the epilogue into ep 2.

  6. going blind into here, from what I can recall from Asuki, there is a lot of shintoist subtext in it. it’s unknown how deep they are going with it, it could be just for flavor like Evangelion’s biblical references.

  7. Home Improvement reference! It’s been too long.

  8. the part-time censoring has to do with that tv stations generally rate by how much time certain things are showing for certain things. so they just need to cover up certain parts long enough.

    also, yes, costco. it’s quite amazing because otherwise it’s nondescript, but you can tell just by the spacing and width of the aisles and the harsh warehouse drop lights.

  9. Wasn’t interesting enough to mention in the post, but if you google “costco japan”, the link after the official Costco site is Danny Choo’s visit to Costco.

  10. They did similar censorship in Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei, only there it was the face of some SHAFT staffer (I assume).

    That watercolor look is amazing.

  11. IRA. Depends on how concerned you are about your tax burden from all of your income sources. My Roth is going fine, but I am still looking at many other taxable income streams, so I have the relief of not having that Roth get dinged.

    I found most of the same blends you talk about in sasami’s influences. But by the time she got nekkid it felt kinda pointless.

  12. ” Anime… oh anime.”

  13. I love Costco. I shop there in Asia and North America, and it’s always the same good stuff with slight differences. I should add, though, that the worst hot dog I have ever eaten was at a Costco in Canada.

  14. Found a random blog post someone made to explain some of the madness in this show.

  15. @zotsi
    Was that Costco the one in Toronto, by any chance?

  16. @mark48torpedo
    It was the one in Vancouver. Heh, are terrible hot dogs afflicting Costco’s across Canada?

  17. Was thinking of passing this entire season after being less than whelmed with Tamako and having already caught Nekomonogatari… and then I realized Shaft. I can just stare at their desktop-worthy backdrops all day.

  18. This is like Haruhi, it owes some inspiration to it, as I’m sure the shout outs are about, but I think Kamiomi is the real god here, while Sasami and the Yagami sisters: she’s the main caretaker while the sisters are backup. They are trying to keep his powers in check. He’s an adult male who has never heard about valentines day? But as soon as he does find out the whole world starts to turn into chocolate, and Sasami is aware that is happening but can’t stop it.

  19. …aaaaand episode 3 explains it all. In extended exposition-dump style. Absolutely nowhere near what I (or apparently anyone else) was guessing.

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