Asobi Asobase – And Then What Happened?

Asobe Asobase

 

  • Genre : Comedy, Slice of life, school, cgdct?
  • Episodes: 12
  • Studio: Lerche

 

Girls will be girls. They might look all sweet and innocent but they are capable of some pretty crazy stuff. Especially when they’re bored. If you think that all high school girls do in their free time is sit around braid their hair, talk about how much they love boys and practice baking for their future husbands…well that’s part of it, sure. But they do so much more. Like call forth evil spirits to destroy a school, invent cruel and embarrassing punishment games, engage in casual physical violence with surprising frequency, and that’s on a good day. The members of the Pastimers Club are bound to take part in any pastime they can find, even if it involves powerful butt lasers. After all, Girls will be girls.

Guys, I’m slow. It’s always a depressing days when you have to face you’re just not that quick on the uptake. That day has come for me… I just realized, well not just now but as I was watching Asobi Asobase, that Lerche is a studio that puts out some really vissually interesting series. Assassination Classroom, Magical Girl Raising Project, Hakumei and Mikochi and Radiant are all very interesting looking and what’s more, they are also all very distinct. Bones is also pretty good at putting out great looking anime that don’t resemble each other. I think it’s the subdued visuals of Given that fooled me about the studios strength. And even the visuals in Given were very effective and suited to the story.

Asobi Asobase ep1-4 (7)

understated and subtle

Anyways, Asobi Asobase looks great and employs very frequent and extravagant art change ups. The visuals are in fact a very active part of the comedy itself so if you’re not a fan of sight gags, this one is going to be tedious. However, for those that enjoy that sort of humour, it’s well done and uses a variety of techniques which are just as interesting to watch as they are fun.

On the whole, Asobi Asobase is a competent production. Those visuals I mentioned above sort of outshine every other element but nothing is in any way bad or lacking. I guess the weakest link might be the backgrounds which are mostly sparse and very repetitive. On the plus side both the OP and ED where wonderful and if you are going to watch this series, I strongly recommend you sit through them at least once. Especially the ED!

Huh, I was sure that my overview of the production would be way longer. I mean those visuals are a big part of what kept me coming back to the series. Hmmmm.

Asobi Asobase ep1-4 (35)

I guess the visuals are pretty standard after all

Storywise, Asobi Asobase is pure Slice of Life. I have not looked into the source material at all, but if you tell me this was adapted from a 4 koma, I wouldn’t be surprised. Single episodes are usually made up of 3 or 4 sketches which don’t have anything in common.

It’s also pure comedy. There’s no deviation for surprisingly touching episode, no introspection or social commentary. There isn’t really any character development either. The series is entirely focused on delivering jokes. Which means that any review of it will be even more subjective than usual. I’m not sure there are degrees of subjectiveness.

People tend to have different preferences when it comes to humour so you should know that Asobi Asobase favours the nonsense variety. Although the premise is possible the most common one in anime, there are a lot of very weird moments mixed in with the usual tropes. Aside from the aforementioned sight gags, a lot of the comedy comes from overstating or overacting to mundane elements or from non sequitur. There’s much less observational humour or sarcasm than in something like Saki K.

Asobi Asobase ep5-6 (12)

even tough there are people with strange powers

So not only do you have to be a fan of this type of humour to get the most out of Asobi Asobase, but I believe you also have to be in the mood for it. I can see how it could be grating under some circumstances.

As I was watching the series, I thought to myself a lot that this would probably have been a show that I would have enjoyed a lot in a weekly viewing format. I found that the jokes sort of had diminishing returns after an episode or two and I do think spacing out viewings a bit would have helped to keep the experience fresh and fun.

I really loved the visuals and I’m a big fan of both comedy and nonsense but I thought some sketches just didn’t quite land. A bit like watching SNL or something. I have a feeling that if you aren’t quite as fond of comedies, or of cute girls and boob jokes, you might end up with more misses than hits out of the experience.

On the other hand, if you like these things, then loading up an episode of Asobi Asobase whenever you feel like a giggle is a great way to go.

Asobi Asobase ep5-6 (6)

yay!

Favorite character: Tsugumi

What this anime taught me: How to play shogi.

“I distrust camels, and anyone else who can go a week without a drink.”

Suggested drink: Hobby Cocktail

  • Every time the president is scary  – take a sip
  • Every time there’s a 4th wall break  – take a sip
  • Every time Olivia trolls – cheers
  • Every time anyone answers quickly  – giggle
  • Every time Hanako is amazed by something – take a sip
  • Every time Olivia has a different hair style – admire
  • Every time Olivia avoids saying where she’s from – take a sip
  • Every time things escalated quickly – gasp!
  • Every time Kasumi doesn’t like men – take a sip
  • Every time we hear about Sensei’s friends – take a sip
  • Every time Maeda appears out of nowhere – try not to be shocked
  • Every time and then what happened – take a guess
  • Every time Hanako’s face melts  – take a sip
  • Every time Kasumi is unintentionally seductive – take a sip
Asobi Asobase ep1-4 (20)

she knows what she’s doing

Let’s see if I can give you an idea of those visuals…

Irina

I'm much nicer than I seem, we should be friends!

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13 Responses

  1. Kapodaco says:

    Really liked this one after the first few episodes. Felt there was a very large dependency on making wacky faces in the early episodes, then started to evolve into all sorts of other gags/insanity as the characters became more identifiable.

  2. Asobi Asobase is the kind of show whose impressions keep popping up in my head, but I’m generally not inclined to watch it again. The humor is pretty nice, but not impactful, it’s not the kind of thing that you’re able to get a laugh out of if you know it’s coming.

    I honestly liked this show. I occasionally catch up to the manga. I was really surprised to see someone actually do a review of it like two years after it’s released. I remember watching the first 2 episodes, then forgetting about it for a while and then binging it at the end of the season.

  3. ManInBlack says:

    Great show! Full of the quirky, subversive humour Japan is good at! 😀

  4. Well that’s a coincidence– I was just listening to the ED the other day. This anime gave me quite a few laughs, though I honestly forgot it existed until two weeks ago. Absurdist humour is great for a cheap chuckle, but doesn’t have as much of a lasting impact as other styles, IMO. And I agree, you probably would have enjoyed it more if you watched it in more than one sitting. I was lucky enough to watch it each episode as they came out.

    • Irina says:

      I think it needed to be a bit more spaced out. I still enjoyed it but I would say something just as absurd like Humanity has declined hit me much more and I think it was in part because of the more reasonable viewing schedule

  5. David Boone (moonhawk81) says:

    Helluva show, this one! Great fun!

  6. Dawnstorm says:

    I remember mostly liking it, but little else. I remember more the feel of the show than any details. It’s that sort of show for me.

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