Spring Anime 2016 Updates - Tanaka

9:08 PM

Here's a series I picked up late into the season, hence it's omission from the Midseason review. I watched the first episode out of interest but it didn't stick. Little would I know that it'd be very similar to the situation I had with Sakamoto – the first episode doesn't really do the series justice. It's kind of fitting, really, as the series has a recurring “don't judge a book by it's cover” theme. Keep up with it, and it's a fun series with a very happy and pleasant tone.

Just fyi, I'll refer to this series exclusively as "Tanaka-kun". It's full title is a bit of a pain to type out multiple times. 

Meet Tanaka, cardinal sin sloth incarnate. He's eternally tired, lazy and avoids things that take more effort than they're worth. He sleeps or is sleepy for most of the day, and seems to have the physical stamina of someone 10 times his age. If this series was about Tanaka's day to day life, I think it'd be infuriating watching him do nothing. Fortunately, it's not. It revolves around Tanaka and his growing group of colourful friends. It's his interactions with them that make the show so enjoyable. The interactions develop both characters, but it mainly helps us see Tanaka's actual character, outside of his usual sluggish, listless self.

Miyano, the living bullet
On the topic of his friends, the show does a good job at introducing them slowly. So far, each episode has brought one new character into the mix; introducing them, and then showing us what their particular quirk is: Ohta and Echizen's characters run contrary to their appearance, more so in Echizen's case. Miyano is a quirky, super high energy living bullet. Shiraishi's a normal girl. And then there's Rino. Rino's been a bit of a one-trick pony, which is unfortunate, because all of the other characters have shown that they're a little bit more than just a trope. She might be the only character to appear more than once using the exact same gag. Unfortunately, I don't think she'll move past her bro-con trait, as, if I'm right, the thing about her is that, despite how similar she and her brother look, she's very much different. I just hope I'm wrong.

Tanaka-kun isn't a rollicking good time. It's not a gut-busting comedy. It's a little slower than most comedies go, and the way the scenes are segmented with scenes of almost nothing really sets the pacing for this series. Scenes have Tanaka just lying there for what feels like an eternity – sometimes I have to check if the player froze, or if it's just one of those scenes.

This is a series that you have to sink a little time into before it starts to click. Episode one is a little lack luster, and doesn't really show what the series can be. Episode three is probably where things start to fall into place and it really just gets better with each passing episode. I think I might like this one better than Sakamoto. The tone is just a lot more easy going than Sakamoto's high strung, absurdity. Tanaka and Sakamoto, if I remember correctly, air back to back, meaning that the contrast between the two must be astounding for people watching both. 

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