School is back in session for some of us in the States, and I am no exception! Getting back to the grind, it’s time to shake off those Summer blues and get ready to hit the books, do the research, and work out all those practice exercises!
But before you dive in head-first into your school year, take some time to
S L O W D O W N ! ! !
and read this review, because Tanaka here’s got different plans! While other school comedies with shōnen protagonists’ names in the title are all about the over-the-top funnies, plenty of coolness and hot romances, Tanaka-kun is about to mellow them out like no other protagonist would.
Why? Because unlike every other protagonist whose presence brings color to everyone’s life, Tanaka-kun will bring gloom and doom to yours if there’s too much attention drawn toward him!
I’m in a slump. These past couple of weeks, I’ve been avoiding anime so that I could at least try to be a responsible adult, only to fail at that, too. I feel like I’ve been spinning my wheels, trying to get a change of pace, yet still get none of the results I’m looking for. Current events don’t help, and after a very long period of reflection, I’ve come to realize that my friends are getting further and further away from me.
Yet recently, I asked some friends about what I should review next, and of the few responses I got, this was their collective choice. Now normally I would look at this series for its hilarity, maybe add one deep thought about it that some of you may not have noticed, and end with a favorite waifu bit; and I will. But perhaps, I’m reading into this request too much, because I want to go a little further than that. Try to win my readers’ affection again (heh… I wish).
For this review, I am going to present an interpretation that helped me realize that this anime is… actually OK. That’s the least I can do for a show that at first glance I reluctantly invested in, simply for the fact that everyone else was watching it.
A metaphor for my life?
What makes a good, healthy relationship? Common interests. Financial stability. Spending time together. Trust in your partner. Emotional support. Affirming affection.
These are things that we know work, because that’s how couples normally would have kindled their relationships. But these are pieces of advice given by those who have had plenty of experience with relationships, romantic or otherwise. But for the young, it can be difficult to understand how these work, frankly because they’ve never tried. Or at least… I’ve never tried.
I adore this anime original, regardless of how overly sappy it is. But as you have probably guessed by the header of this post, I don’t have one opinion on this series; I have two. If you would like to read my first opinion that’s more performative and less analytical, click here. Choose to believe whichever one you like better, but I think there’s value in both of them.
Okay, enough tooting my own horn, let’s break it down!
Before I get into this review, I have one disclaimer: I never grew up with Sega. I’ve done as much research as I could about what this series has to offer, but to Sega fans out there, please excuse my naiveté.
Regardless, it is fun to watch. Truth be told, Sega is still making games, but this anime is based on the light novel series, Sega Hard Girls, which imagines all of Sega’s consoles anthropomorphized as girls. Sega Hard Girls would later become part of a crossover with Superdimension Neptune, but never mind that. This is an anime review!
So with that, grab your controllers, bring some extra change with you, or download those mobile apps. For this review, we will be revisiting Sega’s library of games with the Sega Hard Girls (and their chibi counterparts) as they take on one last task: to graduate high school!
A couple of reviews back, I briefly took a stab at criticizing a fatal flaw in utilitarianism, that having the illusion of happiness can be just as dangerous as letting one suffer from the pains of the truth. I still believe this to be true, but I neglected to offer an alternative that defends why happiness is something that we should value. Given the many animes that I’ve already reviewed that are made primarily to bring joy to their audience, one more case probably wouldn’t hurt. What makes this sitcom different from some of the others that I’ve reviewed, however, is that happiness is more than just something it imparts on us. Rather, happiness is at the heart of why this series matters in the first place! (That and come on, it’s in the title!)
And if you’re thinking that I’m going to somehow over-complicate a comedy anime that wasn’t meant to make sense with theoretical mumbo jumbo, well you’d be half right, but you would also miss out on all the fun things I love about this series that no analysis can capture to such humorous detail! That, and I need to subject you all to the “Timothy Rap” because catchy music is catchy!