Sunday, July 27, 2014

Review: Ishida & Asakura

Typically, the episode length of a short form anime ranges anywhere between 3.5 and 5 minutes. But what happens when an anime is only 12 episodes long and has an episode length of only 2 minutes? Is it possible to convey a comedic story with a credits sequence in such little time? Well, the anime series Ishida & Asakura sure gave it a shot.

The question is: were they trying?

This show features the same exact format every episode. So let’s break this thing down segment by segment, shall we?

First Thirty Seconds: A dialog between Ishida (the one with short hair) and Asakura (the one with the afro).

The dialog between the two students always features the exact number of lines. Asakura starts with, “Ishida, I have a… request” and then Ishida responds with, “Very well, Asakura. I shall listen to your request.” What follows is a quick dialog with no real purpose or humor. The only thing lazier than the writing of this segment is the animation. The animation for this segment is exactly the same in every episode. The only difference is that some episodes features and extra layer of animation in certain scenes. The animation laziness became very apparent when one episode featured a shot where Ishida stopped talking, yet his mouth kept moving.


Second Thirty Seconds: Opening Credits

The opening credits sequence features a simple vertical crawl of the cast with a perfectly acceptable song playing over it. It does nothing exciting, but it does nothing offensive either.
Final Minute: Plot! (In theory)

The final minute is a simple storyline about a day in the lives of Ishida and Asakura. Question: do you think the word “boobs” is funny regardless of context? This show sure seems to think so. In fact, here’s a list of this show’s running “gags”.

-Asakura says boobs, regardless if it makes sense.
-Ishida wants to open a flower shop with Asakura
-Asakura has a slight stutter
-Yamada (classmate) has long buck teeth
-Yamada wants to open a bookstore with Asakura
-Ishida is (probably) gay
-Ishida kills Yamada

Do any of these jokes sound funny? Well, they’re not. Keep in mind, this show is only two minutes long and tries to fit all these gags in every episode. Top that off with statements about their teachers’ genitals, random things happening with no rhyme or reason, and Asakura making a female classmate feel like shit for not have H-Cup breasts and you have a giant order of unfunny crap.

The biggest problem with Ishida & Asakura is that it doesn’t tell jokes. Jokes require setups and punchlines; two things this show lacks. Instead, this show just says random things and hopes we find them funny. What’s worse is that this show repeats these statements over and over hoping that we'll still find them funny. The problem is, this show didn't make me laugh.

This show made me very, very angry.

Ishida & Asakura isn’t a comedy; it’s a show that just throws random shit against the wall and hopes we eat it up. There was no effort put into the actual writing of the show. The irony of random humor is that it actually requires a good amount of planning in order to be funny. Of course, that requires effort. I could go on and on about everything wrong about this show, but if they didn’t bother, why should I? The worst thing a show can do is waste your time. Ishida & Asakura is a 24 minute waste of time that did nothing but anger me. I never thought such a short length of time could feel so very long.

Bottom line: DON’T. WATCH. THIS. SHOW.
This girl is throwing herself onto Asakura and this is how he responds? Fuck this show.
As of this writing, Ishida & Asakura can be streamed officially through Crunchyroll. But seriously, don’t watch this show.

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