Gainax X Nisioisin, OMG totally going to be the best anime evar!!!
One of the complaints I’ve heard about Medaka Box from manga readers was that Medaka herself is annoyingly perfect, to the point that she becomes dull and irritating to watch. I can certainly see that happening once the story moves a bit further, but I have to admit there is a certain appeal in watching a character so extreme in their abilities that they warp the entire world around them. It’s for a similar reason I loved watching Tokuchi Toua from One Outs. There wasn’t a whole lot of depth to his character, but watching everyone be overawed by his abilities was hugely entertaining. Medaka has an element of that to her. The best parts of this episode were the ridiculous visual metaphors of her cradling the earth as she towered over the delinquents.
I wish the show used more of those visual metaphors though. The post-Imaishi Gainax does seem to be taking several cues from Shaft, with the polka dot background textures and some other pieces of artistry. But they don’t do it enough to make the show actively visually interesting to watch. It’s clear that the character of Medaka is meant to be the draw, but the way they draw you into watching more of her is the rather crude method of focusing constantly on her knockers. Whenever she takes a step forward, turns around, makes a pose, whatever, the camera zooms straight in on those humongous wads of fat plonked on her chest. I mean sure, I like boobs, but the method is incredibly lazy. It’s hardly particularly subtle when they make Medaka strip down to her underwear within 5 minutes of the anime starting.
But the most damning part of the anime is the writing. This is Nisioisin, so I was expecting it to be wordy and fully of his usual nonsense wordplay, but there was none of that. Asides from playing anime tropes to larger, more extreme levels in the case of the school as large as a town and Medaka wearing several armbands, there was barely any examples of Nisioisin’s usual writing at all. The shounen speeches were dull and stereotypical. The main character’s attempts to act a Kyon just came off as rather pathetic. You could call Nisioisin’s writing a lot of things, but you could never call it stereotypical. But Medaka Box really is. It’s generic and poorly written, with the stand out part of Medaka’s overly powerful character not even being used very well.
IT GETS BETTER I SWEAR
OK, to beat these guys to the punch, the manga reportedly doesn’t get better for some 50-odd chapters. Which is fine and dandy for people who have the sort of bizarre patience to sit through 6 months of content they don’t like to reach the ‘good stuff’. I cannot see myself doing that. The one interesting part of the show, that being the overly perfect character of Medaka, is something I could see getting very boring very quickly, as it leaves no room for development. I’m not going to sit through that much content of something I can’t see any appeal in just in the hope that it will change into something I still might not even like.