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Aho Girl – 02 »

Aho Girl – 01

OP Sequence

OP: 「全力☆Summer!」 Zenryoku☆Summer! by Angela

「来たぞ!アホガール」 (Kitazo! Aho gāru)
“Aho Girl Coming!”

Our newest summer comedy turns out to be a 12 minute 4-koma adaptation, and Aho Girl is all the better for it. A show like this thrives best in a shorter format, because anything else would make many of its jokes overstay their welcome. The title of the series already spells out where the humor will stem from, so if you came into Aho Girl looking to see one of the densest high school girls around, you came to the right place. The jokes splinter off into two categories: The classic boke/tsukkomi routine where Hanabatake Yoshiko (Yuuki Aoi) goes above and beyond to agitate Akutsu Akuru (Sugita Tomokazu) with her idiotic charm, and jokes where they get more creative by making Akuru’s lack of social prowess or self-awareness get the best of him. Also, bananas. Mmmmmm, bananas! Bananas are so great! Bananas are the best! Back to the topic at hand, these jokes are understandably hit-or-miss, but when they land, they’re a riot!

Yoshiko is one of the show’s best and worst aspects. She is incredibly stupid by educational standards and her inability to read social cues around her. Much of the show’s jokes center around how she gets on Akuru’s nerves through her helplessness in class and her insistence on inserting herself in his life on a regular basis. If you’ve had that friend in the high school anime club that screamed in your ear about everything and tried to apply anime knowledge to real life scenarios, then you have a general idea of what Yoshiko is like. It helps that Yuuki Aoi plays her so well that her performance of Yoshiko’s impulsive state of mind gives the jokes she’s the focus some umph to it.

While too many of her jokes stem around her obsession with bananas, I appreciate how crafty the show gets with her, especially in the second half. It was priceless when she tries to allure Akuru by pasting her face over a dirty magazine, and then tells the Moral Standards Officer on him. Or during the first instance of a double entendre with bananas, she reveals that she wants to use a rare banana as a form of currency in exchange for grabbing boobs. The jokes are as dumb as Yoshiko, but the gravitational pull she has can create some funny results. There’s also potential to have her stand out with her only positive trait in being able to empathize with Sumino Sayaka (Harada Sayaka). It makes me hopeful that they can work with jokes where Yoshiko comes up with smarter solutions to her problems, but in a clever, dumb manner.

I mention this because while Yoshiko can be overbearingly silly when the focus is on her, Akuru is a black hole where a scene’s comedic value is sucked away into the void. Much of his screentime is dominated by his joylessness. If he isn’t outwardly spiteful of Yoshiko, he’s punching her in the face for the crime of making a silly remark. I like how it becomes part of how his classmates react around him or why Sayaka is startled by his gut reaction to be angry at everything, but it doesn’t make him funny. The only time his punching shtick is really warranted is when Yoshiko is groping the Moral Standards Officer, but even then it’s undercut by my fear that if he were to charm any of the girls as well as he did with the Officer, he’d also Hadouken them into the Stone Age for small mistakes. The one redeeming factor is how well his dryness works with some of the joke’s outcomes. His quick reaction to Yoshiko’s dirty magazine trick or the entire scene where Sayaka immediately gives him sympathy after she finds out he’s friendless were funny moments of his.

On the whole, Aho Girl has a lot of potential to be one of the funniest anime this season. It’s help back by the repetitiveness of the boke/tsukkomi jokes that are jammed in throughout the first episode, but there are way too many funny moments to write off right away. If the writing can tweak up the show’s humor to keep things fresh by honing in on what made Episode 1 so funny, then I can definitely see Aho Girl being a pleasant surprise this season. For the time being though, it’s just a nice series if you want a short burst of funny in between the action-packed anime that make up a bulk of the Summer’s must-see programming. I’m looking forward to seeing where the show goes from here, and I’m rooting for it to become even funnier as time moves forward.

Preview

July 5, 2017 at 8:40 am
48 comments »
  • July 5, 2017 at 9:57 ampuppygod

    On the whole, Aho Girl has a lot of potential to be one of the funniest anime this season.

    Oh god, I know this season is somewhat lacking, but it can’t possibly be that bad.

    • July 5, 2017 at 11:36 amChoya

      I wanted to be kinder to our other comedy options this season, but Aho Girl has some stiff competition from the moment in Fate/Apocrypha where Flat dropped a pile of books for comedy of the season.

  • July 5, 2017 at 10:38 amAngelus

    I’m conflicted here. Aho Girl is kind of amusing in a cringy way, but its main message seems to be that it’s OK to physically attack girls who annoy you. Am I the only one who wants to think that in a real school Akuru would at the very least be suspended for his repeated outbursts of violence?

    • July 5, 2017 at 10:45 amruicarlov

      Gender equality, my friend. After so many years of males being subjected to tsunderes’ outbursts of violence for much less stupid/perverted actions, it kinda puts a new spin on things.

      • July 5, 2017 at 11:14 amChoya

        To me, it’s juvenile in both cases.

        The “EW, BAKA ECCHI! PUNCH!” routine that tsundere do when physically abusing the main character might look easier to swallow because it’s not a girl getting her lights knocked out, but its still being tongue-in-cheek about how terrible and abusive the girl is.

        It’s obnoxious in these tsundere shows, and it’s one of the aspects that bog down Aho Girl. I get the same eyerolling from a guy being beaten for a misunderstanding that I do when Akuru punches Yoshiko in the face for making a joke in class.

      • July 8, 2017 at 8:53 pmGuardMonkey10

        It is refreshing to see a girl getting her shit pushed in for a change after 25 years of watching anime. Deeply progressive. Finally equality is here. The absurdity is high grade. He’s a total cold asshole and she’s an unkillable total moron. They deserve each other. I’m sure Kotaku will write an article about it and claim she only acts dumb because she’s got brain damage from all the horrible beatings from that terrible shitlord who must have voted for the wrong party. Seriously, just wait. The salt will be here. Wisps of salt air are already present here.

    • July 5, 2017 at 11:02 amChoya

      If Yoshiko’s face wasn’t so comically expressive, this show would be a high school drama about a boy who regularly beats a girl in public, and scares his classmates with the rap sheet he’s building with every punch. In another world, the show would be a satire of the boke/tsukkomi routine with the tsukkomi being publicly ridiculed and shunned for being so terrible to the boke.

      It’s also important to note how as odd as it is that he’s able to get away with beating the crap out of his friend this out in the open, his classmates still find him to be scary after the first punch. In particular, Sayaka spends most of the episode scared of him, most likely because she keeps seeing him hitting Yoshiko in the face.

      • July 5, 2017 at 11:33 amAngelus

        Cartoon violence, like the classic “guy gets punched so hard by girl he ends up as a little twinkly star in the sky” thing, is clearly for comic effect. Or like Tom hitting Jerry (or vice versa) with just about anything you could imagine. The violence in Aho Girl doesn’t feel comic to me, though, it just feels, well, violent. I guess I’ve just had too many years of subliminal feminist reprogramming!

      • July 5, 2017 at 11:48 amChoya

        I feel you. To me, it would’ve been fine if they only brought out Akuru’s violence every so often. It wouldn’t feel terrible if it was just as an extreme response to Yoshiko’s groping or a random suplex to emphasize how far he’s being pushed by Yoshiko’s behavior. I can let my guard down and laugh at stuff like that if it was always eccentric and only brought out on occasion.

        The main problem here is that this show relies so heavily on Akuru hitting Yoshiko as a punchline to a joke, especially in response to a goofy comment, that it becomes an offputting character trait for Akuru. Like it’s a part of his character to beat her in response to almost anything she says. It became the most apparent during the first Sakaya segment with almost every exchange being a chop to the side of her head.

      • July 5, 2017 at 12:23 pmpaulrenzo

        “…or a random suplex to emphasize how far he’s being pushed by Yoshiko’s behavior”

        Isn’t that the case though, since it looks like Akuru has known Yoshiko for the longest time, and has probably had to endure her antics for that long a period as well?

      • July 5, 2017 at 1:07 pmChoya

        If that was the case, then almost every hit was him breaking his boiling point. She makes a small comment about him misunderstanding girls, and he pays her in kind with an uppercut to the jaw.

        Because it’s the dude’s go-to response for everything, a goofy suplex feels less like something he’s been holding back on, and the suplex blurs together with all the chops, punches, and spikes he’s given to Yoshiko.

        Let’s think of it like bananas. Yoshiko eating a couple bananas is funny. Yoshiko eating a thousand bananas makes her come across like she’s eating way too many bananas. She might’ve eaten Banana #934 differently, but by that point, it’s just another banana.

    • July 6, 2017 at 4:52 amweasl

      You’re reading too much into it. The show revolves around a type of stand up comedy act in Japan that usually employees a paper fan. This show just uses fists instead.

  • July 5, 2017 at 1:12 pmJohnPeacekeeper

    This dude has like Issei Ryuudo levels of girl resistance

  • July 5, 2017 at 2:09 pmGray.

    Yusuke & Futaba Show. http://i.imgur.com/5iaU6wU.gifv

    • July 5, 2017 at 2:39 pmChoya

      “Give me the bananas, Inari! I hunger!”
      “But you are far too uncultured to appreciate the refined beauty of a banana bunch. I used the last of my train fare for the week to buy 12 of them. Eating such art would be undignified. It would be, dare I say, bananas for me to do so.”
      “…”

    • July 6, 2017 at 1:00 amJHN

      Aaaaand now I can’t stop picturing them as them. Hair colours don’t help either.
      Now I don’t want to stop watching this at all.

  • July 5, 2017 at 4:15 pmMaou

    I don’t know why…but i feel even aqua from konosuba not as annoying as her.

    • July 5, 2017 at 10:52 pmJohnPeacekeeper

      Because she can actually be cute? Especially when she’s being bullied?

  • July 5, 2017 at 6:03 pmET

    I’m a long-time fan of the manga and was extremely happy to see this animated. Aoi Yuki did an awesome job voicing Yoshiko. Yoshiko was more or less born this way and as the childhood friend and target of her unwanted affection, Akuru’s had to suffer for a loooong time. I’d say his reactions are justified when you’re dealing with an annoying pest who won’t leave you alone. It’s a funny spin on the usual childhood friend scenario where the MC hates his with all of his being.

    • July 6, 2017 at 12:36 amSetsunahenry

      But funny thing is that Aoi Yuuki has (some) feeling with Tomokazu Sugita. (Well, that what I read on the internet).

    • July 6, 2017 at 6:05 amChoya

      True, I’d imagine it’s easier for Akuru to react that way if we knew how far they go back. Yoshiko keeps coming back and Akuru appreciates someone giving him company, so it seems like a mutual agreement. My comments yesterday took Akuru too seriously when they both seem to be on the same level as far as how the show pokes fun at their behavior.

      I also enjoyed Aoi Yuuki on the show. She has the talent and energy to pull off the excited goofiness that comes with Yoshiko.

  • July 5, 2017 at 6:26 pmLoliHat

    Nice to see them dial the aho up to eleven and go with hyperbolic nonsensical comedy, and I certainly hope they don’t introduce and drama or romance or whatnot.

    I’m not bothered by the “violence” because it is obviously just as hyperbolic and nonsensical as the aho-ness of Yoshiko. It may not be to the same level of The Three Stooges but is definitely in the same vein and works because its not realistic.

    Overall, it’s a pleasant departure from the usual “cute girls doing cute things” genre or the “aho as prelude to romance (or worse, drama)”.

    • July 6, 2017 at 6:08 amChoya

      True, it’s refreshing to see a comedy anime where the entire focus is on creating funny scenarios for the characters to work through. Usually, there’s such an emphasis on introducing drama or romance to keep it on a deeper level, but in 12 minutes, Aho Girl would thrive best in keeping up the energy it’s building by sticking with humor.

  • July 5, 2017 at 7:38 pmHanabira.Kage

    > “Ooh Banana!”

    Well someone’s been watching SGDQ. :p

    • July 6, 2017 at 6:10 amChoya

      I got it from the Donkey Kong soundclip, but I’ll have to check out SGDQ

      • July 6, 2017 at 10:57 pmHanabira.Kage

        I see.

        They kept saying it during the Donkey Kong 64 run XD

  • July 5, 2017 at 8:07 pmdaikama

    Yeah… no. NOT working for me on any level. Comedy is subjective of course, and clearly this works for others which is fine. Personally, I found it more sad and kind of cruel than anything funny. Oh well, win some & lose some.

    • July 6, 2017 at 6:44 amChoya

      To me, it was more hit-or-miss (no pun intended), but I understand if people found it to be a harder hurdle to cross.

  • July 5, 2017 at 8:15 pmSetsunahenry

    So people can’t enjoy this anime because of girl get physical attack by guy and doesn’t feel like comedy.

    • July 6, 2017 at 6:47 amChoya

      That’s the one thing that seems to be a dealbreaker. In my post, I mention that there are other times in the show where it’s absolutely hilarious without having to get Akuru’s fists into play, but the frequency of his hitting seems to be the elephant in the room.

  • July 5, 2017 at 9:36 pmJeffers

    God damn.. I watched this and then i become an idiot too… This anime is not safe… Stupidity is contagious. Spread of disease is by eyes. You look at her tou become an idiot yourself.

    And i Feel for the guy.. Iwould not only punch the girl but also kick her guts out for her unvelievable amount of stupidty

    • July 6, 2017 at 6:50 amChoya

      How can you not giggle at how amused and proud of herself she looks when she thinks she did/said something clever? If I could do more screencaps of short anime, I’d have a whole collection of Yoshiko’s silly face.

  • July 6, 2017 at 5:10 amIncognito

    “Also, bananas. Mmmmmm, bananas! Bananas are so great! Bananas are the best!”

    Sounds like Yoshiko (Man, why’d she have the same first name as Aqours’ resident chuuni?) would get along quite well with those damn Minions. (And that “Banana” song of theirs is stuck in my head again…)

    http://randomc.net/image/Aho%20Girl/Aho%20Girl%20-%2001%20-%20Large%2006.jpg
    As much as I appreciate the fanservice in this shot, the fact that she’s “Too Dumb To Live”(?) is a bit of a boner-killer.

    OK, I knew that I’d be expecting slapstick comedy from this anime. But man, the cringe feels strong in this one. Akuru also reminds me of WataMote‘s Tomoki Kuroki (voiced by Sugita’s best bud, Yuuichi Nakamura), with both characters playing the exasperated tsukkomi guy to a boke girl.

    I’ll give it two more episodes and see if they’ll improve on the comedy in a good way, or just resort to the cringy slapstick. At the very least, I do like how Yoshiko somehow has “stupidly clever” moments. Not to mention Sayaka and that Moral Standards girl (Voiced by Hitomi Nabatame?) are kinda cute.

    • July 6, 2017 at 7:03 amChoya

      But her stupidity is the best part about the fanservice! But yeah, there is a cringyness to how slapstick it is with the boke/tsukkomi routine. It seems like such a staple in anime that it’s hard to reinvent the wheel on it, especially when it feels a little dated. I do have a good feeling that it’ll at least build some momentum as it goes on if it hones in on her stupidly clever moments. I found many moments on the show funny so if they can distill those, then at the very least it’ll be an enjoyable short anime to kill time with.

      I’ve luckily avoided the Despicable Me and Minions material so their banana tricks won’t work on me! Huehuehue! Instead I just have to see it around me in cubicles and Facebook walls. Because of this, my impression of minions are that they hate working on Mondays and how millenials are always on their damn phones looking up their Lifejournals and MyPlaces.

      • July 6, 2017 at 9:00 pmIncognito

        I totally cringed a lot watching WataMote, but yeah, YMMV on how well one handles cringe comedy. I still hope there are scenes in Aho Girl where I’ll actually lose my sh*t laughing and not cringe. If the show delivers on that within the next three episodes, then we’re good.

        Also avoided actually watching the Despicable Me movies or its Minions spinoff. On the other hand, ads for those films (actual trailers or merchandise tie-ins) are nigh unavoidable. And, those Minion memes are one reason why I don’t want to sign up for Facebook. But I digress.

  • July 6, 2017 at 8:27 amNishizawa Mihashi

    Oh mai Kami-sama, GAIS, GAIS.

    Chill-the-fucking-lax out GAIS, Y SO SERIOUS. It’s just a dumbass comedy man. Alright, so maybe most Westerners don’t like dumbass comedies, but where I live, we gobble up that shit yaw. And from the looks of it, this seems good enough, so hey why not I give it a shot!

    • July 6, 2017 at 8:53 amChoya

      No worries, I’m sticking with it. Yeah, the boke/tsukkomi stuff taken to the max in Aho Girl doesn’t jive as well with Western audiences, and I can understand where they’re coming from. At the same time, it is a dumbass comedy, so it’s hard to take it too seriously with some of the jokes.

      It can be unsettling the more you think about it, but I’d imagine that as the later episodes go on, they’ll have more in their toolbox to rely on to get laughs. After all, the problem I have is just that the first episode doted too much on the hitting jokes when their other jokes are funnier.

    • July 6, 2017 at 8:59 amNishizawa Mihashi

      True dat son. Using the same joke over and over again just ain’t gonna work no matter how dumbass the angle is. It’s like re-using the same old dank meme on the internet that I’m like “OMG you’ve gotta be *&%^ing kidding me”

  • July 6, 2017 at 5:24 pmlunascha

    This show is one of those you play in the background while doing something else lol. I don’t mind watching this when I just want something easy-going. Though, I wish they had a bit of a story in the beginning. It just started with them two going at each other. I had to check if this wasn’t the second episode.

  • July 6, 2017 at 6:45 pmHissatsu

    It’s kinda ironic cause Aoi has slapped sugita at least twice in some show lol

  • July 6, 2017 at 11:37 pmSageM

    Yoshiko is like a female version of Akihisa Yoshii from Baka and Test, but with the behavior and personality of Asuna from Softenni…

    Also the scene were Akuru imagines himself in the distance and say’s “Her kindness hurts..” Has to be the funniest line in the entire episode.

    • July 7, 2017 at 9:02 amChoya

      There are definitely Baka Test vibes from how helplessly dumb both Yoshii and Yoshiko are, yet are able to find clever ways to try and accomplish what they want. It’s been forever since I watched through Baka Test, but I have good memories of it.

      The back of Akuru’s head as he gazes down on himself was hilarious. I think the combination of that and Sayaka’s reaction to his phone’s list of contacts made that such a great scene.

  • July 7, 2017 at 5:24 amKaineng

    Suck it, Despicable Me 3. Idiot banana monkey girl is here to stay haha

    On other things lol, I keep thinking of Seitokai Yakuindomo when I watch this show because of all the panties and boobs references. And also, I’m not going to challenge anyone here to question that idiot’s stupidity (I have a feeling I’ll be using the two words a lot) because that is what I will do if someone is that dumb: not referring to him/her by the name.

    Now you have to question how come she knows so much even though she’s an idiot. (Plot progression, I know)

    • July 7, 2017 at 9:28 amChoya

      I, for one, welcome our new banana overlord.

      It does have that SYD feel to it as a comedy where the jokes are quick and to the point, as well as the many times Yoshiko is forward about wanting Akuru to be enticed by her.

      As far as why she knows as much as she does, she most likely has a selective process of what she wants to learn about. She has absolutely nothing as far as being book smart and the talent of reading the mood around Akuru, but she seems to have some street smarts going for her. She’s gotten Akuru invested in trying to help her out and offer her bananas, she is able to level with Sayaka and get her to be friends with Akuru by flaunting his friendlessness, and made the Moral Standards girl lower her guard so she can have a grope. She has the brains, but she applies it in terribly unproductive ways that do nothing to make her a smarter person.

      • July 8, 2017 at 6:12 pmKaineng

        Oh wow Choya thanks for the explanations. Now I really feel like an idiot. (I was referring to her)

        Well for me enjoying the comedy is good enough reason to watch this show already, and if that idiot doesn’t reveal herself to be smarter otherwise I think we have a show to watch haha

  • July 7, 2017 at 9:09 amGinobi47

    http://randomc.net/image/Aho%20Girl/Aho%20Girl%20-%2001%20-%20Large%2004.jpg

    Violence against women!

    Finally! An anime that has TRUE GENDER EQUALITY!
    I’m watching this!

    PS: The jokes are kind of lame but in a good way…. i guess?

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