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My Ordinary Life -nichijou- - First Thoughts PDF Print E-mail
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Sunday, 03 April 2011 20:53
Don't let the robot girl trip near you. Really. The results are quite dramatic. Mio and Yukko are walking to school - and wondering what to do about Mio's missing student idea - when they get hit by the backlash of just such an incident - but is it a sign of good luck or bad? Meanwhile, said robot girl finds herself blown onto the roof of a building, and doesn't know how to get down.

Simple thoughtsAbunai...

For fans of a certain length of standing, I'll make this simple: it's Azumanga Daioh, redone for whatever catchy name you give this decade (the Teenies? I dunno...). I even spotted a dead ringer for Osaka in there. With that comparison, you'll know exactly what you're letting yourself in for.

For everyone else: I believe Nichijou is an adaptation of a 4-koma gag manga It's an adaptation of a comedy manga, so what you get is a 25-minute collection of short, one- or two-scene jokes and gags, helpfull interspersed by eyecatches so you know when it's moving from one skit to the next. The main characters - blue-hair Mio, airhead Yukko, quiet girl Mai and their teacher Sakurai-sensei; robogirl Nano and the Professor who made her - are not what you'd call complex characters, but they each fill clear roles and they're a decent amount of fun to watch. The series is also produced by Kyoto Animation, so their trademark attention to detail does the series no harm either.

Where it falls down, though, is in perhaps being a little too clever for its own good. Some of the gags are pretty straightforward and easy to catch; a lot require a bit more thought, if they don't go over your head at all. If I'm watching a show like this, my preference would be for something nice and simple - the animation style leads you to believe that's what you're going to get, and you don't. Quite.

THE GOOD: Very nicely done. "Kyoto Animation" is enough of a good point for some people, I suspect. Having Azumanga as a kind of spiritual predecessor is a definite plus. (I should stress there's no actual link between the two, it's just what I see.)

THE BAD: A little too complex in the gag department to be completely throwaway viewing - a little thought is required. 4-koma adaptations can run out of steam quite quickly, too, so the next few episodes will be interesting to watch to see how it fares.

First impressions of Nichijou are good, then, but there are a few pitfalls along the way that it could fall into. It's KyoAni, so the odds are they'll do a good job of avoiding them, but we'll see. A keeper for now, though.

My Ordinary Life -nichijou- is being simulcast by Crunchyroll and, in the UK, Anime On Demand.

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