OP Sequence

OP: 「SHOOT!」 by RO-KYU-BU!
Watch the OP!: Streaming ▼

「小学生がやって来る ヤァ!ヤァ!ヤァ!」 (Shougakusei ga Yattekuru Ya! Ya! Ya!)
“The Grade Schoolers Have Come, Ya! Ya! Ya!”

I suspect a good measure of how you’ll like Ro-Kyu-Bu! is going to be tied to the question of how you feel about a series that introduces itself with an extended scene of five 6th-grade girls in the shower.

There’s more to it than that, of course. There’s one of the most brazen panty-shots you’ll ever see in a mainstream anime – but that’s an adult, at least. And there’s a little plot too, based on a popular LN series by Aoyama Sagu (in turn adapted into a PS game and two mangas). First-year high schooler and basketball Jones Hasegawa Subaru (Kaji Yuuki) is devastated when his school basketball club is suspended for a year due to an indiscretion by its Captain, whom Subaru idolized. Apparently the lad ran off with the adviser’s daughter – who happened to be in grade-school. Thus, the stink of lolicon is on the club and Subaru by extension.

Enter his sexy Aunt Miho (Itou Shizuka) who more or less blackmails him into coaching the grade-school girls team she just started. The club sits at exactly five girls, and they’re pretty much all copied straight from the textbook. There’s basketball whiz Tomoka (Hanazawa Kana, fulfilling her contractual requirement to be in at least one show every night of the week) who seems to be the reason the others formed the club. There’s tall and busty Airi (Hidaka Rina), uber-sensitive about her size. Along for the ride is gamer and genki girl “Maho-Maho” (Iguchi Yuka), brainiac/romantic/glasses girl Saki (Hikasa Youko) and babyish Hinata (Ogura Yui). We’ve also got a preposterous gang of knee-pants schoolboys apparently hell-bent on keeping Subaru from staying on as coach and a couple of school chums from his high school, including a possible love interest, Aoi (Itou Kanae, apparently reuniting Ohana and Kou from HanaIro).

But really, this show is all about cute little girls and showing them off. It probably tells you all you need to know about this show that the girls decide to greet their new coach dressed in maid cosplay and call him “Master”. When that doesn’t work, they switch to “Onii-chan”. There’s not too much pretense about the fanservice here – there’s lots of it (though some of it fairly innocent) and the girls are awfully young. Character designs are over-the-top cute, which either helps or makes it worse, depending on your POV.

The thing of it is, though, that the execution isn’t half-bad. None of the three studios credited has ever been a lead studio on a series that I’m aware of, but director Kusakawa Keizou is a real veteran – he did the 2nd and 3rd seasons of Nanoha, the Nanoha movie, Sekirei and Dog Days among others. It’s a solid cast, headed by Kana. The pacing is peppy, the animation is bright and cheerful and the story could just be mildly interesting if they don’t totally give it over to fanservice and moe. There are a few funny moments in the episode, including a very clever bit where the girls converse online via chibi avatars on a tiny basketball court. The OP is rather bland, but I quite liked the peppy ED – although it does sound uncannily like the first OP from Minami-ke, “Keikenchi Jōshōchū”.

If you don’t stop and think too much about what’s happening, this one might be sort of enjoyable. I’m not looking for brilliance here by any means, but if Ro-Kyu-Bu! develops it might just cross the threshold of “amusing”.

 

ED Sequence

ED: 「Party Love〜おっきくなりたい〜」 (Okkiku Naritai) by RO-KYU-BU!
Watch the ED!: Streaming ▼

Preview

97 Comments

  1. First off: Incredible post. I wasn’t aware that Keizou Kusakawa was the one behind Dog Days and Sekirei- both of which I love for their fabulous drama and intense action. Haha I feel like I just got a full dose of what I’m watching without even watching it yet. 8D

    I like lolis. So from my POV, I’m sure to get along with this. Keeping an open mind (and a closed door) is key. -nods- That aside, is this the show your going to be blogging for us? I don’t know if RC is still in the “first impressions” phase or the shows have been decided.

    ps. I know it may sound spoiled, (which it is, cuz I am.. >>”) but could you throw in a few links like Divine and Takaii does for the slick wording you pro writers use? For example, knee-pants schoolboys.. I don’t know what you mean. 🙂

    1. Check Divine’s post “Summer 2011 Schedule” – it covers everybody’s schedule! At this point with 5 shows for RC plus LiA, my plate is pretty full – I doubt this one could crack the rotation. But you never know…

      1. Thanks I just did. I was a little excited and posted here before anywhere else. ^^; I’m very happy with what’s being blogged and can’t wait for things to get into full swing. Ganbate, Enzo.

  2. I think you mixed up Tomoka’s and Airi’s links o_o

    Anyways, this wasn’t terribly horrific like I thought it would be and I ended up enjoying myself quite a bit. I’m just hoping that the series doesn’t take a sudden nosedive towards horrendous.

    Click
  3. Well it really doesnt look like may cup of tea… Anyways thanks Enzo for giving the first impression on this series.

    Are you sure thats an aunt?!?! She looks like she might be a student herself…

    Flappy
  4. “Hanazawa Kana, fulfilling her contractual requirement to be in at least one show every night of the week”

    Haha. I know what you mean. I really do enjoy KanaHana’s work (that voice!), but damn, she’s more than ubiquitous…she’s like air!! Let some of the other VAs have a shot! =D

    sikvod00
  5. Im guessing most of you watched the raw, and just looked at the pictures and assumed this is just a anime geared towards pedophiles, and lolicons. There are definitely a lot of shows like that out there, but this one actually has a story. Its a shame cause the studio does use “fan service” to reel in “some” people and get them to buy the dvd, but for the most part, its coherent and decently paced story. Its ironic, how the so called moralist focus in on the loli portions and completely ignore the actual story. I guess this what you would call ignorance.

    stuff
  6. I think I love your post already, thank you ^^ lol at the first sentence 😀
    On the other side, I find this a little bit scary. I have nothing against lolis and people who like them but imo I find this one over-the-top. Skip skip skip

    kgfj
  7. Not watching the show, but about the post itself: Valid criticisms while staying unbiased and (trying to stay) mostly positive, extra background information one couldn’t get just from watching the show, inline humour… yup, I think you’ve covered all the bases on everything I come to RandomC for. Well played, new guy. 🙂

    zem
  8. Nice post Enzo. I haven’t watched Ro-Kyu-Bu yet, but the straight forwardness (in a good way) in the last two paragraphs have convinced me to skip this anime, since you told me what type of anime this is.

    It looks entertaining, I love KanaHana (I’d seriously watch this just for her voice alone), but there are so much other anime’s starting this season that I’m really interested in watching (which is plenty), plus, on top of that spring season anime carry over into this season. Ugh, just too much anime to watch >_<

    I'm looking forward to more of your post.

    rainstrife
  9. I enjoyed reading your post a lot! I really like the way you write :3 However, it also made it quite obvious that this show won’t be my taste at all. I do not feel good seeing sixth graders in maidcostumes or in the shower.

    I’m looking forward to your blogging of Ao No Exorcist, NO.6 and Dantalian, because those are the shows that I will definitely follow (or already am following in case of ANE) and it will be very nice to read your thoughts on them 😀

    SummelBaerli
  10. I hope they focus more on basketball lol…moe is one thing, but fanservice on 6 graders doesn’t feel right…plus Ishihara might pull the plug on this one if it continues on the line its heading haha…

    Taiakun
  11. Looks funny enough, I just hope they won’t do too many fanservices. And I hate the boys basketball team already ;x

    PS. Is this supposed to be a joke or is it actually in her contract?
    >Hanazawa Kana, fulfilling her contractual requirement to be in at least one show every night of the week<

    Serapita
  12. I watched this and Blood-C. Blood-C rocked and I loved it. This I didn’t love so much. Think I’m gonna skip this series. Is too loli creepy for my taste.

    Karmafan
      1. I thought it was next sat as well but no. I think Doki has it subbed. Was a good episode. Typical CLAMP character designs similar to XXXHolic but Saya was gorgeous. Its a total reimagining of the series. Saya is a high school girl with quite a few friends that are also listed as characters in the OP. There are 2 twins that are adorable and remind me of the twins from Yakamo.

        Karmafan
  13. I think that the show may even be a bit more about basketball than “C: The Money of Soul and Possibility Control” about economics.
    Well, at least from the very beginning it doesn’t pretend to be about “some serious basketball”.

    SpoilerMaker
  14. Since I pretty much watch like 95% off all the anime that comes out every season i’ll definitely be watching this – but I actually found it quite enjoyable.

    Nothing wrong with loli’s after all =P

    Thundershock81
  15. @Zem: Thank you – definitely what I’m aiming for.
    @Stuff: Just to clarify, I have read the manga and I don’t think the story is significantly changed in the anime (so far). Definitely trying to provide a balanced picture while still trying to be honest about what I perceive the show to be.
    @Misao – Thanks for the clarification, noted.
    @Serapita: Just a little joke on my part…

  16. Great first episode post! It gave just the information I was looking for. I admit the only reason I’m giving this a shot is because of Kaji and Hanazawa, but, haha.

    reminbee
  17. Yeah, I couldn’t tell that was Hikasa Youko at all, and I usually have a pretty good ear for her.

    The first episode wasn’t anything too bad, since I’m pretty much okay with the service. I’m willing to see where it goes, considering the plot isn’t too bad or anything. (Seems like Mihoshi is younger than Subaru, except that’s impossible.)

    I find it funny how they animate basketball these days, though. I didn’t know teams really employed the triple team.

  18. I thought I heard her too, Torrigan – it was a tiny scene, but I had an “Ohana” flash for a second. But I don’t see the character in any cast list yet so I didn’t want to post that unless I was sure. Ohana and Kou – together again?

  19. your review makes it clear this is not very inviting if one is looking for something interesting to watch. And from screenshots and what you said it’s clear it’s bent on fan service/cute/moe etc. I’ll watch the first episode and see how it is

    gawrshness
  20. I’m going to continue watching just to see what’s the problem with the team. Who knows? It may turn out quite interesting. After all, I did enjoy Lotte no Omocha.

    Kevin
  21. I’m going to pass on this show. The first episode did nothing for me. In fact, if I didn’t know better, the sheer blatancy of some of its scenes would have made me think it was trying be satirical, lol.

    In any event, this just isn’t the show for me (in much the same way that I enjoyed neither Dog Days nor Sekirei). Then again, I don’t have to be. The creators know EXACTLY who their audience is, and you certainly can’t fault them for taking full advantage of that knowledge 🙂

    kazukifafner
  22. I’ll give the second episode a try as well to see if I’ll continue with this one. Lotte gave off the appearance of a pure loli anime, but it was actually pretty good, maybe this one will be the same case.

    AliceNightray
  23. First episode felt too generic and the “maid costume” attempt was rather pointless. A proper coach-trainee intro would have give a much better impact to introducing the characters.

    Art and color scheme was too sugary for my tastes. Even more so than Milky Holmes.

    Anyone felt that some of the characters look too much alike?

    Kimberly
  24. I now demand a shopped pic of Yokkyun wielding Cloud Strifes sword.

    I reckon give this show a chance, as someone said Lotte turned out to be a very good series and probably my sleeper hit for last season.

    Thundershock81
  25. I like it, not in any sick kind of way I just like cute little things like a little puppy, Can anyone say there is something wrong about loving puppies, no right. So I like this.

    mike
  26. The reason behind Japan’s obsession with lolis, pedophilia and high-school ecchi shows is their nation’s increasingly lower birthrates and larger senior population. They’re sexualizing children shows, such as this disgusting show, so they’ll be thinking about sex at a younger age.

    Omn
    1. You are disgusting retard, there is not sex in this show idiot, it focus on comedy and some drama like in the manga. And japan is the place there is less criminality compared to the rest of the world. Before talking nonsense do some research.

      Roberta
  27. Looks like an ok animie to me.Watched the first 3 episodes.The fansirvice is no big deal at all,really.
    You look at the story and ignore the fansirvice.

    Komodo no Jikan was not bad,either.Rin was truly something.These girls are nothing in comparison.She was good at sexual herasment .Hehehe.The teacher was quite the victim.Not to mention lesbianism between underage girls.

    Here both the teacher and the girls are quite well behaved.Of course there is the shower scene whitch is really no big deal.

    I remember I real life when I was at the beach or lake resort and saw these naked litle girls and boys runing around.At one point I was one of them.Was about 10 years old or so.

    mik

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