photokano 1

So. Much. Rage. If only I had an outlet for expressing how I feel… oh yeah…

I am at the age now where I don’t care that much about harem anime. They’re like Tony Hawk games to me at this point. I’ve seen enough to have seen it all. However, Photokano touched on my nerve a bit because I enjoy photography, and it felt like the show was doing a piss poor job of it. Look, either go for the semi-accurate angle like how Initial D approaches drifting or Drops of God approaches wine or go completely absurd like School Rumble and basketball or Code Geass and rebellions. But don’t half-ass it. And don’t make silly errors. I mean, I would imagine a decent portion of anime fans like photography, as evidenced by the plethora of SLR cameras I see at each con I go to. Try not to induce too much photography rage, please?

(This show got me because the protagonist slash loser male lead Kazuya gets a Canon 40D. The styling and the focus points are the same as the 40D. I used my 40D for six years before I jumped from Canon to Sony Nex. It is a camera I have fond memories of. But I rage because there’s semblance of photography in this show. It’s like The Taste and good food.)

(A 40D with kit lens is worth maybe $250 now. I cannot imagine getting one to be a life-changing event for a high school kid with average to above-average income parents in Japan. And this leads me to my real rage point…)

“How about taking a photo of me sometime?”

… THIS IS JAPAN! There are cameras everywhere! I would imagine at least half the class owning their own camera, whether it is a point-and-shoot, SLR, or cellphone camera. Judging by the various phones we see in this show, most of the look like HTC Ones or Galaxy IIIs. What kind of weird world is this that high school girls do not have cameras? If you’re going to make a harem anime about a photographer, why not set it in 1970s Japan when cameras weren’t as common? 2013? Everyone’s got a camera.

Also rage worthy? The first episode’s conflict is that Kazuya has to decide whether or not to join the photography club, which is a sausage-fest that specializes in taking creep shots, or join the photo club, which features hot haremettes taking trips to capture interesting photos. How is this a dilemma? On one hand, he could improve his photography, take some nice pictures, and maybe camp out with hot haremettes. On the other hand, he could get arrested and labeled a sex offender. It’s okay for anime to go the pervert route, but that works for comedies like Sora no Otoshimono… I’m not sure how well it works here. I mean, the guy doesn’t really need to join a club. He could just go around seducing the haremettes one-by-one a la Amagami (with the ending of each girl’s arc being that she lets him photography her, uh, brushing her teeth, if you know what I mean). Toss in some fanservice, and the show would at least be decent. The fact there’s a creep shot club muddling the plot. Well, I don’t have expectations for this show now.

(He could have said “no” to both clubs and joined the Volunteer Club instead.)

(Oh who am I kidding? I had a huge issue that the club wanted to teach Kazuya to be a “better” photographer, but I suspect they will just teach him how to do more creep shots. If this show was an Amagami-styled show mixed in with some real photography elements like aperture and ISO done in a way like Drops of God, this show would have potential. Instead, squander.)

What the hell? It’s obvious that Kazuya is using a basic kit lens, yet he manages to zoom in (at least a 300mm zoom from where he is standing with relation to Mai) and be able to instantly focus. He’s indoors! With no tripod! Come on anime. If you’re going to make a harem anime, at least get the photography to be semi-realistic. I already have to deal with the harem relationships being sci-fi material, I don’t need the photography elements to be just as absurd. How hard would it have been if he swapped his lens out for one of these beauties and kept the photo realism going?

“It’s not sneak photography!”

Wait, taking up skirt and down shirt photos aren’t sneak photography? Oh anime… you may actually be correct. I mean, paparazzi sneak photos of celebrities all the time, so what’s the harm of a horny teenaged boy snapping creep shots of nubile high school girls? Oh yeah. That.

(I imagine modern Japan awash in Dr. Pepper, as it is the hipster anime drink, much like how I see nothing but IPAs in San Francisco gastropubs. I just had a Dr. Pepper right before sitting down to write this post, but not because I particularly wanted to drink it. I had made crockpot pulled pork and had some Dr. Pepper leftover from it, so I decided to drink the remainder. Then again, maybe this is why Dr. Pepper is featured in anime: it’s a non-standard soda, the Ron Paul of sodas, and it is versatile enough to be used as part of slow cooked pulled pork.)

“It’s my camera now.”

I like how the sister’s name is “Kanon,” as Canon is very large camera company. However, I was disappointed that the rest of the haremettes weren’t Nikon-chan, Leica-tan, Fuji-nee, Panny-chan, and Sony-san.

The opening, Koisuru Lens, is terrible. The song tries to put photographic terms in the lyrics, and it doesn’t work very well. Even Soulja Boy wouldn’t touch these lyrics. Also, I get the feeling the show wants to promote the fact it has fanservice, but the opening was basically five seconds of terribly done CGI photos falling followed by a split second of a fanservice shot and repeat. Make up your mind. Give us fanservice or not, but don’t half-ass it. I guess in that respect, the opening does reflect the show. It doesn’t know what it wants to do, just tosses elements in just to have those elements. Oh look, gymnast girl! Tennis girl! Softball girl!

Madhouse’s animation is average with the animation being smooth but the character designs seem inconsistent.

12 Responses to “photokano 1”

  1. Oh good, too many people have been ignoring the blatant creep factor of this show.

    The only reason I plan to watch episode 2 is to find out whats up with Misumi and Niimi.

    Though I will say that while the photography club may be a sausage fest, the Photo Club appears to populated with lesbians, so he’s SOL either way.

  2. At least those high and low camera angles is SHAFT inspired!

  3. I remember thinking at the beginning of this episode thinking “Well, at least the animation doesn’t look like shit, but lets see what else redeems it” and not coming up with a whole lot else before the end of episode.

    Good luck with the thin slicing this season though, there’s something like 60 shows on the chart for this season.

  4. I found this one extremely boring. It’s nothing we haven’t seen before, the boys behave like freaks (probably because they are; and they look like freaks, too), and the stupid male lead killed any interest of mine that was left by joining the wrong club. The only reason I will check out episode 2 before dropping it is the Senahara girl.

  5. You should write more posts where you bash an anime. One per season (usually through thin slicing) isn’t quite enough.

  6. I seriously think that you should split the thin slicing into 2.

    One for the “good anime” rank, and one for the bad ones..

    Well, something like Oscars and Razzies you know :v

  7. What??!! No Kodako-chan in this?? No Poro-Poro-roido dance in the OP or ED??

    Well then….there is not enough NARRAGANSETT Beer in the State of Connecticut to get me to watch this, then.

  8. Jason, which NEX do you have? How is it working for you? Am torn between the 6 and 7.

  9. if anything the anime reminded me to jump on the manga

  10. Mah. how depressing. Can’t really say I find this worth watching myself.

  11. The opening is not very good, but the opening song is actually has a good feel of nostalgia for some reason. I think it’s very different in a sense.

  12. I wouldn’t go so far as to assume a generic harem setup, but it’s looking that way. The rest of the male cast is forgettable and they’re there just to promote service shots and skirt-lifting. Yeah, no. So, all hopes belong to the seven girls at Kazuya’s high school plus his sister, Kanon ( Mariya Ise ). A majority of them are introduced in passing, but I got so confused with three of the girls that I don’t think I’ll ever get it right, should I continue to delight myself with the series. All three of them have blue hair with differing lengths, but you would think that anime magic would grant them different colored hair for distinguishing purposes. It’s honestly one of those rare times when I wished for neon green and bright pink so I can at least tell them apart.

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